Interview with Dominik Bösl

Dominik Bösl

Dominik Bösl is VP of Innovation and Technology Management at KUKA AG which is one of the world’s leading suppliers of intelligent automation solutions. At Command Control he will discuss the link between cybersecurity and topics like AI and robotics governance. We spoke with him about the security challenges faced in robotics.

What special security challenges are faced by globally active companies?

Bösl: The security challenges for globally active companies are generally no different than those faced by local companies. The important thing in each case is to know what happens to the data and how to guarantee that this data does not reach the outside world. There are of course very different legal framework conditions around the world that will have an impact on the relevant security strategy. In addition, there are very different attitudes to privacy and how user data should be handled. This also needs to be taken into account by globally active companies.

And what special security challenges are faced in robotics?

Bösl: In this context, the challenges are no different in robotics than in other aspects of the Internet of Things: It is firstly important to ensure that data cannot reach somewhere in the outside world in an uncontrolled manner. This would be an economic disaster comparable to when crude oil leaks into the environment. In addition, production losses caused by attackers—e.g. when somebody manages to stop a production line—are a major threat. We only need to consider that a car body can be built today in just 40 to 60 seconds. Even if a production line is only stopped for three minutes due to a security incident, the car manufacturer has already lost three cars. Such small incidents can thus have tangible financial effects.

What can participants in the Robotics meets BI panel at Command Control expect on 21 September?

Bösl: The Robotics meets BI panel will examine how robotics and automation, including consumer robotics, will permeate into our living environments. Robotics will be omnipresent in the future and I even believe that our grandchildren will be the first robotic natives. This makes it all the more important for us observe the effects on business models, in other words on BI, and naturally on security. It is precisely in this area that our information also needs to be secure in the future.

Do you think that cyber security can also be a growth lever for companies?

Bösl: Yes, definitely. I think that in the long term only those companies that engage with the subject of data security and take appropriate action will be successful on the market. This is why this subject is so important, not only for users but also for companies and all participants in the digital supply chain.

Command Control is primarily aimed at decision-makers. Why should this target group engage with the theme of cyber security?

Bösl: In my opinion, there needs to be an understanding of how extremely important cyber security will be in the future, starting right at the very top of the company. The more things we network, irrespective of whether it is on production lines, smart devices in houses or other assets such as self-driving cars, the more attack points we create and the more important cyber security becomes. This understanding needs to be anchored in strategic management.

Why are you looking forward to Command Control?

Bösl: I find the event concept for Command Control very good. Cyber security affects us all because all things will be networked in the future and an important aspect will be guaranteeing security. This can only happen if decision-makers in companies get involved.