Category: Grid Modernization
Distributed Energy Resources (DERs) are evolving from static systems to expansive fleets of assets to Virtual Power Plants (VPPs). However, a critical and fundamental aspect of DER operation is often overlooked – security. Industrial-IoT (IIoT) devices, such as solar, storage and EV charging stations must have trusted connections to the Internet, and one another, in order to realize their true value propositions. We discuss security of DERs, specifically around two key areas: data integrity and compromised assets. Additionally, we compare tradeoffs that solution providers face in implementing security technology such as cost vs. performance.
We start by discussing real world applications of data integrity, who cares and why it matters? What are the variables of ‘trusted’ data or data sources? We will describe what actions and technologies can be used to further ensure the integrity of data produced by DER equipment and the notion of immutability. This will include best practices from other industries as well as discussion around emerging technologies, like distributed ledgers and what impacts they may have on cost or performance.
Secondly, we reflect upon a future smart grid containing high penetrations of renewables and the challenge for technology vendors and aggregators to properly identify a device, or groups of devices, that have been compromised by a cyber attack. We examine how trust is monitored amongst networks that are vastly distributed and highly heterogeneous. Lastly, the methods of revoking access to potentially compromised equipment, and how this has been a challenge for the broader IoT market.
Keith Rose– CEO, Operant Networks