SEC2GRID: The necessary collaboration in innovation
SEC2GRID, the complete name of which is “New smart electronic devices for a more secure electricity distribution grid against cyber attacks”, is a technological innovation and development innovative to address the growing interconnection of grids and the consequent increase of their vulnerability to cyber attacks. This project is characterized by the collaboration of companies throughout the value chain, including ZGR.
This cyber security in smart grids project is driven by the consortium of companies formed by the major operator in the Basque Country and one of the largest in the world, Iberdrola the main manufacturers of grid control and storage devices for the energy sector (Ingeteam, Arteche, Ormazabal, ZIV and ZGR), a global level consultancy and cyber security services company, PwC, and lastly, a recently created company, but a highly innovative supplier of IoT Industrial Edge cyber security solutions, geared towards, among others, the Smart Grids sector, BARBARA.
Also participating as agents are Ikerlan and Gaia, the R&D departments of ZGR, IRDE (Ingeteam), ACT (Arteche), OCT (Ormazábal), y ZIV R&D (ZIV), who will work on assigned developments and will transfer the technology to selected companies. SEC2GRID has HAZITEK finance
The Importance of Cyber security in Smart Grids
The transformation of the electricity grid to a smart infrastructure, known as a smart grid, is a necessary evolution for adapting to the transition to renewable and decentralised energy sources. However, this transformation does not come without challenges, and cyber security is a key element in the protection of this vital infrastructure.
The risks associated with digitalisation of the electricity grid demand proactive and advanced solutions, and it is precisely this premise that guides the SEC2GRID project.
Mitigation and diagnostics of cyber security in smart grids: One of the SEC2GRID challenges
Furthermore, the immediacy requirements of the response complicate the introduction of cyber security mitigation and diagnostic measures, therefore the SEC2GRID project is tackling this challenge by proposing mechanisms with which the devices can assess their own cyber security status. This challenge also has the added difficulty that the aforementioned mechanisms must be interoperable and deployable in heterogeneous devices of a very diverse nature.
Electrical infrastructures are strongly interconnected, and a cyber attack that causes an interruption in the service in a part of the electrical system can cause a chain reaction generating the cascade effect in other parts of the system, as well as in critical systems that require a power supply.
For this reason, equipment manufacturing companies as well as technology suppliers, cyber security services companies and, lastly, operators require a communication framework that facilitates collaboration. In SEC2GRID, this challenge is tackled by proposing common data models that unify cyber security information of the Smart Grid elements, as well as federated service architectures for threat intelligence and management of cyber security incidents.
SEC2GRID is a tangible example of how collaboration between leaders in the industry can drive significant advances in the field of cyber security in smart grids. ZGR, with its extensive experience in grid control and regulation and storage, contributes in the development of innovative and effective solutions. The protection of our electricity and industrial grids is a shared mission, and projects such as SEC2GRID demonstrate that it is possible to achieve it through collaboration and constant innovation.
If you want to know more about the project, we encourage you to read the opinion article published in the SIC magazine, pages 105, 106 and 107.