Smart Meters and Energy Utilities
The energy sector’s adoption of IoT devices has continued to increase, and it shows no signs of slowing down. Tools such as smart meters have provided flexibility and resilience, as well as cost savings. However, these IoT devices often contain vulnerabilities that could compromise utilities’ revenue and the overall security of the grid.
Smart Meters and Energy Utilities’ IoT
Dellfer takes a unique approach to protecting IoT devices, such as consumer devices, industrial control systems (ICS), and other tools used to manage energy utility services. Conceptually, it is simple. Dellfer essentially takes a fingerprint of the software used to run an IoT device, then sets up detection mechanisms that trigger defenses if any changes appear. For instance, if malware is injected into the software, Dellfer detects it and quarantines it. Or, if the software is altered to behave differently, Dellfer identifies the source of the issue and neutralizes it.
Security Challenges and Smart Grids
“IoT provides better control and monitoring of the power grid in a smart grid network, so it is necessary to concentrate on the security challenges in order to develop, implement, and integrate IoT devices in the smart grid.”
– Cyber Security Issues for IoT based Smart Grid Infrastructure, IOP Science
Smart Meters and IoT Risks
According to Jeff Shepard for Mouser Electronics:
“The expanding use of IoT devices for smart grid monitoring and control enhances the ability to deliver sustainable energy economically and efficiently. Unfortunately, an increasingly IoT-enabled smart grid will include millions of nodes, resulting in a much larger attack surface for an IoT-focused cyber-attack. It will also open new vectors over which attacks can be launched. For example, MadIoT attacks using the Mirai botnet can turn insecure IoT devices into weapons of mass disruption that can have devastating consequences going far beyond individual security or privacy losses.”
IoT Impact on Utilities
- The market for IoT in utilities is estimated to grow from $28.6 billion in 2019 to nearly $54 billion by 2024.
- 96% of IT professionals with responsibility for digital security expect to see an increase in attacks on the industrial IoT.
- IoT projects, encompassing utilities and lighting, represent the largest global smart city projects share at 22% and 21%, respectively.
- Gartner estimates that utility companies have 1.37 billion IoT devices in service.