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Cyber Scholars: Protecting US Electrical Grids Is Costly

a pair of photos show a blackout in new york city on top of a normally lit skyline.
New York City (above) in a blackout, compared to a normally lit skyline. (AP)

By    |   Wednesday, 08 May 2019 10:23 PM

Protecting America's electricity grid will cost tens of billions of dollars and most likely fall to consumers according to grid cybersecurity scholars, Defense One reports.

Russians have already hacked into the U.S. power grids and the Department of Homeland Security and other federal agencies since 2014 have been warning against cyberthreats to the utility system.

But there is no way to protect the grids, as regulations at the state and federal level make it difficult for utilities and regulators to get anything done.

"Most electricity utilities are highly regulated by the government, so they have to provide a certain level of service and spend money on required compliance activities. In return, those utilities are permitted to recover a certain return on their investment," write professors Dominic Saebeler (University of Illinois) and Manimaran Govindarasu (Iowa State University) for Defense One.

So, when costs rise, companies should provide clear information to consumers.

If not, "what those customers can ask for, and in our view what regulators should insist on, is clear information about what those charges will be paying for," write Saebeler and Govindarasu.

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According to cybersecurity scholars, protecting America's electricity grid will cost tens of billions of dollars and most likely fall to consumers, Defense One reports.
scholars, hackers, electrical grids, dhs
Wednesday, 08 May 2019 10:23 PM
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