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12 Expert Insights from Day Two of SmartRail 2018.

Posted by Luke Upton on Apr 18, 2018

SmartRail Day Two Highlights“Cyber security should not be seen as a burden. There needs to be a shift in the way we are thinking..."

Day two and another packed agenda at SmartRail World that began with an issue that must regularly top the list of concerns for any infrastructure manager working in digital: how do you protect data against increasingly determined cyber criminals? Moderating the session on that very topic was Armand Toubol, the vice president of the company that promotes sustainable transport and logistics initiatives, New Opera, who called on experts in the cyber security field from the Netherlands, UK, United Arab Emirates  and Greece in the form of Nederlandse Spoorwegen, the UK Department for Transport, RTA Dubai and Enisa.

As yesterday (and if you want to learn more about what happened there, click here ) , Day Two had three streams and Peter Smyth, the chief mechanical engineer at Irish Rail kicked things off in the Signalling and Telecoms room with the challenges the operator faced while rolling out wireless internet across its network but also highlighted the financial benefits it has reaped since doing so. Meanwhile, offering a potential solution to a frustration that nearly all rail passengers will be able to relate to, Joao Nazaré from Comlab explained the progress it has made to keep the business world working wherever the train may be with reception-boosting systems for mobile phones.

In a slight deviation to the previous day’s agenda, the post-lunch focus was condensed into two core subjects: freight and mobility as a service (MaaS). Lina Konstantinopoulou spoke effusively about overcoming IT challenges and increasing rail freight share.

Examining the improvements that MaaS has already brought – but with a firm eye on the future – Piia Karjalainen, senior manager of MaaS Alliance, spoke about how the joined-up form of transport can be used more intelligently to combine transport modes on one easy-to-use account. Microsoft’s Valentina Ion took some time from hosting the company’s stand at SmartRail to demonstrate to the audience just how much of a game changer MaaS will be to the transport industry and the passengers using it. Valentina also showed the clear reliability, connectivity and technological benefits that any operator using MaaS can benefit from.

To keep up to date with live tweets from today you can use the #SmartRail and our own @SmartRailWorld Twitter account for photos, quotes and news!

“For us in Dubai, we have three areas of risk: safety, operational and reputational. And cybersecurity is a threat to all three.”  Mohammad Youssef, Chief Engineer - MSN and Cyber Security, RTA Dubai

"Sharing is how we all learn. By not sharing worst practice in cyber security as well as bad practice, you make others vulnerable..." Natasha Maksymowski, Rail Cyber Security Advisor, UK Department for Transport

“We need a real environment to for ethical hackers to work in, but this is happening painfully slow. It’s taken two and a half years to get to the point where we nearly have this to use. It’s a very complicated environment but we need to get there.” - Lies Alderlieste-de Wit, Chief Information Security Officer, Nederlandse Spoorwegen

“Cyber security should not be seen as a burden. There needs to be a shift in the way we are thinking, and how we set up our systems.” Dimitra Liveri, Security and Resilience of Communication Networks Officer, ENISA

“The future of rail management is going from planned to predictive maintenance. The holy grail is to be able to predict where the failures will be. Increasingly we will use IOT, Big Data, and AI to better predict rail conditions, and anticipate maintenance requirements. Best practice asset management includes life cycle costing and a risk management analysis.” Ian Koeppel, Head of European Transportation Business Development, Esri

“In Ireland, traditionally engineers have made the decisions, but now we are looking to change our decision making process. In terms of asset management, value should be driving our decisions. We are looking to use data tools to help us optimise an asset class level. And we are looking to extend this way of thinking to include information and innovation.” Jude Carey, Head of Finance and Commercial Asset Management, Irish Rail Infrastructure

“Getting reliable data needs a good tender process, flexible and robust contracts and professional contract management. Then once we starting getting the data, you need experts to make sense of it. Then you need to engage your stakeholders, and get out and show people what we can do!” Rens Stehouwer, Contract Manager, ProRail

 “We are obliged to offer people the same connection and the same experience on the train as they have at home or in the office when it comes to connectivity.” Ernesto Sicilia , MD of Trenitalia UK

“Intercity journeys, over an hour, have a market for a device that is pushing paid content to the passenger. But below that, for commuters, I don’t see much opportunity for revenue... and it’s hard to see past the Bring Your Own Device model.”  Peter Smyth, Chief Mechanical Engineer, Irish Rail

“Mobility as a service is not happening in five or ten years. It’s here today!” – Piia Karjalainen, Senior Manager, Maas Alliance

“Partnering with your competitor to deliver a better service for the passenger is something we all need to do, however odd it may feel at the start.” – Valentina Ion, Senior Government Industry Manager, EMEA, Microsoft.

“What about the major issues? It’s not about technology, nor is it about not the ticketing system. Instead the key issues are;  Start with your customer, get them involved – it’ll be the best consultancy you’ll ever have. Set up your governance right – know who is doing what. Then there are banks, they are in migration as well, they too are going through disruption and are not always going to be the easiest partner. Testing – you have to do it, you have to cope with it. And finally are the transport operators, who are the key stakeholders in this whole process. It’s not about technology! Manage your new ticketing system as a change programme.” – Arco Groothedde, Chief Executive Officer, Translink. 

You may also be interested in...

Read: 12 Expert Insights from Day One of SmartRail 2018.

Read: 5 Minutes With… James Shi from Taiwan High Speed Rail.

Read: 5 Minutes With... Natasha Maksymowski, rail cyber security advisor at the DfT.

Download: New Frontiers in Transport Ticketing 

Read: Recycling: are rail companies really doing enough? 

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Luke Upton

Written by Luke Upton

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