This work reviews recent advances in research on oxide scale behaviour in hot rolling processes. Presenting novel approaches, the paper emphasizes the crucial role of reproducible experiments to elucidate the scale properties coupled with numerical analysis to develop quantitative models with predictive accuracy. Oxide scale failure is predicted taking into consideration the main physical phenomena. The most critical for scale deformation and failure parameters are measured during testing and depend on the morphology, scale growth temperature. They are also very sensitive to the chemical content of the underlying metal. The work integrates the combined finite/discrete element analysis with a range of experiments each provide partial insight into oxide fracture, friction, heat transfer, descaling and pick-up, mechanical intermixing taking place near the stock surface among others.