Contributing to the cyber security of DB’s IT and OT

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Cyber Security

Supporting major projects and raising security awareness among colleagues

Article: Contributing to the cyber security of DB’s IT and OT

At Deutsche Bahn, around 300,000 people work on essential infrastructure for the entire population. Ensuring the cyber security of information technology (IT) and the digital infrastructure used in rail operations (operational technology, OT) is therefore an important task with many facets.

Cyber security specialists and experts make DB digitalisation secure and therefore also sustainable. Their contributions to secure IT and OT infrastructures help to make operational processes reliable and customer information channels secure. As DB is involved with critical rail infrastructure, some areas in which it works are also subject to particularly strict requirements, and we at DB Systel help the company to meet such demands with our expertise and solutions. As a cyber security expert at DB Systel, you will work on “traditional" IT applications and infrastructures used by millions of passengers and will also be involved in operational technology (OT). This covers machines and systems connected in networks, such as those found in maintenance depots, in infrastructure assets on the rail network or even on our trains. Cyber security at Deutsche Bahn comprises numerous fields and activities: prevention based on secure system configurations, raising awareness, guidelines and advice, but also emergency drills and analyses of existing systems. 

The diverse roles of a cyber security expert  

Cyber security jobs at DB Systel can have very different titles: consulting roles such as Security Consultant, Security Architect, Security Engineer or Security Manager. Or roles with a stronger technical focus such as Penetration Tester, Application Security Specialist or Cyber Defence Expert. Cyber security experts at DB Systel work with many different target groups and technologies. Some focus on the human aspects of security: they define rules, raise awareness and train their colleagues so that they can apply the knowledge in their day-to-day work.  

Others accompany digitalisation projects as part of a project team and contribute the relevant security aspects. They identify potential risks and ensure compliance. In other roles, IT security experts deal with specific solutions such as identity and access management or network access management (NAC) to make sure access is secure. They also run important security monitoring solutions within the Group, such as SIEM ("Security Information and Event Management") or Web Application Firewalls (WAF).  

Enable secure digitalisation 

In an advisory role, security experts ensure that data and applications are consistently protected in a wide range of projects. They design security concepts, manage security solutions or analyse internal and external applications for vulnerabilities. 

Ensure preventive measures are in place and train colleagues 

Cyber security experts train Group partners and IT consultants on security issues. They advise on establishing cyber defences and raise their colleagues' awareness of correct everyday behaviour.  

Create a basis 

Cyber security also needs appropriate frameworks: cyber security specialists create guidelines and policies for different target groups, which vary according to their job role. These can be based on legal requirements or specific security scenarios. 

What skills and traits are we looking for? 

Knowledge and experience of IT architectures and software development will help you in cyber security. You are familiar with the latest security requirements and suitable measures, for example as a result of specialising in information security. DB's digital infrastructure is diverse – making it ideal for those who love to constantly tackle new challenges. Security is largely an interpersonal matter: you thrive on exchanging ideas with different contacts and convincing them of your mission – implementing specific and overarching security requirements.  

After all, the security of our passengers' and employees' data and systems leaves little room for compromise. You turn headwinds into productive energy. You don't necessarily have to have a background in IT: graduates in engineering professions such as electrical engineering, automation and mechanical engineering are also becoming increasingly important to our challenges in OT security. As many roles and tasks are very specific, we support new colleagues with mentoring programmes to help them get to know Deutsche Bahn’s requirements and structures. 

“We have realised that we cannot wait for "ready-made" applicants from the labour market, but can only make rapid progress with appropriate training and mentoring programmes."

Frank Breitschaft, Chief Consultant OT-Security, Operational Technology Security Consulting (OTsec)

Protecting cyber security at Deutsche Bahn 

At DB Systel, cyber security experts can engage with all facets of cyber security in their day-to-day work: they teach colleagues how to recognise phishing e-mails, take care of governance tasks or support the secure digitisation of critical infrastructure in large-scale projects: 

Supporting forward-looking major projects 

Deutsche Bahn is modernising and renewing numerous components of its infrastructure. These include IT networks, the power supply, new trackside sensor technology and essential software systems for rail operations: cyber security experts are supporting these projects, thereby making an important contribution to advancing the digitalisation of the railway.  

OT-Security: security for machines and systems 

Systems and machines connected in networks are extremely important when it comes to running efficient and automated processes in a complex organisation such as DB. They can be found in DB maintenance depots for example as well as along the track. Experts for the security of "Operational Technology" (OT) – like their colleagues in IT – carry out risk analyses, support the implementation of projects and give advice when questions arise. 

Designing secure digital workplaces 

A large number of Deutsche Bahn employees work with mobile devices. We work together to ensure that laptops, smartphones and virtual desktops are thoroughly secure in terms of design and usage. We provide the system landscape and solutions that enable all employees to work well and securely together. 

DB Systel is growing steadily and supporting Deutsche Bahn in numerous digitalisation projects. That is why we want to strengthen our team to handle the various tasks in IT and OT security. So you'll always find a good match for your talents and skills on our job board.