Cybersecurity: a fundamental pillar of Industry 4.0

Every revolution stems from ruptures and innovations. With the Fourth Industrial Revolution this would be no different. Marked by the incorporation of new technologies in industrial production, technologies such as artificial intelligence, virtualization, decentralization, robotics, metaverse, augmented reality, 3D printing and the internet of things are gaining more and more space in the industrial sector.

The nomenclature Industry 4.0 derives from this current period of transformation that the industrial sector is in and there is no turning back. Ignoring this reality is a one-way ticket to obsolescence. Combining new technologies in industrial production is a mandatory destination (and with no return) for a strong and competitive national industry.

The focus of the Fourth Industrial Revolution is on improving the efficiency and productivity of processes through automation and integration between equipment, data transfers, machines and software.

However, technological development needs to be underpinned by cybersecurity. I dare say: without cybersecurity, there is no industry 4.0.

According to a study carried out by FortiGuard Labs, in the first half of 2022 Brazil suffered 31.5 billion attempted cyber attacks from January to June this year – a 94% increase over the same period last year (with 16, 2 bi) – being the second most attacked country in Latin America, behind Mexico, with 85 billion, and followed by Colombia (with 6.3 billion) and Peru (with 5.2 billion).

IBM Security’s 2022 Cost of a Data Breach Report reinforces the need for attention to the matter: the cost of a data breach averaged $4.35 million in 2022.

But that’s not all: 83% of the organizations studied had more than one data breach, and only 17% said this was their first data breach. Sixty percent of the organizations studied stated that they raised the price of their services or products because of data breaches, which undeniably impacts their competitiveness heavily.

In the age of the Digital Economy, companies need to face cybersecurity as a business risk and not as an issue restricted to the IT Department. This is because the consequences of a cyber-attack can imply production stoppage, breach of contracts, leaks of intellectual property, strategic information, violation of the General Law for the Protection of Personal Data (LGPD), financial losses, loss of work, damage to the reputation and so many other disastrous consequences.

For companies that want to implement a safer cyber environment, it is necessary, among other measures: the mapping of the digital structure, since what is not known cannot be protected, the management of the vulnerabilities found, the formation of a response team to incidents, constant staff training on digital education, the use of tools that protect and monitor remote terminals and the adoption of encryption.

*Juliana Callado Gonçales is a partner at Silveira Advogados and a specialist in Tax Law and Data Protection (