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Cybersecurity of the Grid

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Note from the editor

A first-ever cyberattack against U.S. wind and solar assets in 2019 opened a new front in the ongoing battle to ensure the security of the nation's power grid.

More recent incidents involving multinational energy company Enel as well as a natural gas compressor station also show a growing threat to the energy sector.

To reduce the risks, companies are examining their security culture and turning to new approaches like machine learning, while the Trump Administration is working to address threats from China, Russia and other countries.

The following trendline examines various threats, responses and challenges in the ever expanding "cat and mouse game" of cybersecurity.

Larry Pearl Senior Editor

Trump's grid security order sows confusion in power sector — but don't expect a quick fix

The executive order limits the installation of bulk power system equipment sourced from foreign adversaries, but experts say the vague action has the industry 'freaked out.'

Enel ransomware attack highlights the value of a top-down security culture

Utilities say they are prepared to meet cyber threats. Are they?

Budgets are rising and power companies are focused on exceeding the baseline security standards required by energy-sector regulation.

First cyberattack on solar, wind assets revealed widespread grid weaknesses, analysts say

New details of a denial-of-service attack earlier this year show an energy sector with uneven security.

Natural gas ransomware attack offers critical lessons for electric utilities, analysts say

In the 'cat and mouse game' of utility cyberattacks, AI and machine learning show promise, limits

"There is so much low hanging fruit in utility system challenges that can be addressed by advanced data analytic strategies that AI and machine learning are not the place to start."

NERC struggles to involve utility vendors in its biennial cyberattack simulation, and that's a big problem, analysts say

Utilities 'caught in the crosshairs' as US-Iran tensions rise; experts say domestic cyberattack likely

Iran wants to avoid a shooting war following the United States' assassination of a top military leader, making domestic cyberattacks "almost a foregone conclusion," according to one expert.

As Dominion, others target 80-year nuclear plants, cybersecurity concerns complicate digital upgrades

Squirrels, cyberattacks, age and climate: Obama DOE official reviews top risks to US grid