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Safeguarding the bioeconomy, with Bio-ISAC

The bioeconomy, according to the Congressional Research Service, is “the share of the economy based on products, services, and processes derived from biological resources.” This sector is composed of a complex network of biomedical, bioindustrial, and agricultural domains. Work in this space ranges from biological research, to production and distribution of products, as well as the equipment and systems used in those processes.

As the bioeconomy grows and evolves, its manufacturers are increasingly reliant on digital technologies and interconnected systems. Cybersecurity is paramount. Ensuring the security of supply chains, industrial control systems, intellectual property and data, protecting the connected critical infrastructure becomes essential to prevent disruptions and maintain trust. Robust cybersecurity measures safeguard the bioeconomy’s valuable assets and maintain public confidence in the sector’s ability to drive sustainable innovation and economic growth.

To support these efforts and Google Cloud’s commitment to securing the cloud, our customers, and the planet, we have joined the Bioeconomy Information Sharing and Analysis Center (Bio-ISAC) as an Industry Member. As an Industry Member, we will help connect organizations working to better secure the bioeconomy with Google Cloud’s own cybersecurity resources and expertise.

“We must act now to secure our bioeconomy infrastructure. Together with Google Cloud, we are ready to mobilize resources to achieve this goal,” said Charles Fracchia, cofounder and board chair, Bio-ISAC.

Bio-ISAC is an international not for profit organization that addresses threats unique to the bioeconomy. Working to enhance the cybersecurity posture of the biotechnology industry, Bio-ISAC brings together companies, research institutions, government agencies, and cybersecurity experts to share timely and relevant information on emerging cyber threats, vulnerabilities, and mitigation strategies to keep the industry informed and better prepared to protect critical assets and infrastructure.

This collaboration is part of Google’s commitment to invest at least $10 billion over the next 5 years to advance cybersecurity. This same commitment has enabled us to join other industry ISACs — including Health-ISAC, Financial Services-ISAC, and Electricity-ISAC — to support the security and resilience of our critical infrastructure across key sectors.

In January 2020, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine released their report, “Safeguarding the Bioeconomy” offering an initial framework of what the bioeconomy includes, what risks exist, and a series of recommendations to create safety and security across the bioeconomy. Of note, this report issued a recommendation stating that “all bioeconomy stakeholders should adopt best practices for securing information systems (including those storing information, intellectual property, private-proprietary information, and public and private databases) from digital intrusion, exfiltration, or manipulation.”

Recognizing the criticality of this industry on the US economy, in September 2022, the Biden administration signed an Executive Order (14081) to launch a National Biotechnology and Biomanufacturing Initiative.

As the bioeconomy grows and evolves, its manufacturers are increasingly reliant on digital technologies and interconnected systems. Cybersecurity needs become paramount. Ensuring the security of supply chains, industrial control systems, intellectual property and data, protecting the connected critical infrastructure becomes essential to prevent disruptions and maintain trust. Robust cybersecurity measures safeguard the bioeconomy’s valuable assets and maintain public confidence in the sector’s ability to drive sustainable innovation and economic growth.

“I am proud to announce our partnership with Bio-ISAC. By fostering collaboration, sharing threat intelligence, and leveraging our advanced security solutions, we strive to protect the critical research, data, and infrastructure that underpin the advancement of the bioeconomy and its biomanufacturing and biotechnology discoveries,” said Nick Godfrey, senior director, Office of the CISO, Google Cloud.

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