Success – securing critical energy infrastructures

Living in a safe and secure society is a fundamental human need. Today’s energy providers have really embraced change. Huge transformations are already happening in the energy sector due to the renewable energies, consumers become producers and  devices in the home, such as Smart Meters and Smart e-Vehicle chargers, becoming able to communicate directly with the utility.  The production of electrical energy  is becoming  more decentralised and the grid is becoming an open system with a large number of players. Making the grid open requires  the development of new technologies to ensure reliability of electricity supply.

At the same time, operators of other Critical Infrastructures, such as gas grids, water grids, transportation, hospitals and banking systems, have been integrating Information and Communication Technologies (ICT). Due to the critical importance of the operations conducted by such Critical Infrastructures and because of their mutual interdependencies, security concepts must be developed and realised in all of them. Security means security of the operations and resilience to all types of threats: not only Cyber-attacks but also adverse weather conditions or any other potentially disruptive event such as loss of equipment.

Project Objective

The SUCCESS project will develop an overarching approach to threat and countermeasure analysis with special focus on the vulnerabilities introduced by Smart Meters in the energy domain.

The project aims at designing, developing and validating on small scale field trials a novel holistic adaptable security framework which is able to significantly reduce the risks of cyber threats and attacks when next generation, realtime, scalable, unbundled smart meters are deployed in smart electricity grids, enabling innovative applications and value added services within the emerging smart decentralised energy system paradigm.

SUCCESS will achieve this objective by encapsulating the key challenges of Security, Resilience, Survivability and Privacy into 3 use cases which will focus the research, implementation and evaluation concepts of the project.

The concepts will drive investigations of threats and vulnerabilities of current and future Smart Meters and other field devices, network devices and networks, the definition and implementations of countermeasures and their use in the SUCCESS field trials demonstrating the countermeasures at work. 

The Success scope

The SUCCESS project addresses both utilities networks and the communications networks and IT capabilities that support them.  It considers both of these infrastructures as they are currently used, as they will be used in 2020 with Next Generation functionality and finally as they will be used and designed in the time beyond 2030.

SUCCESS examines the interdependencies and exploits the potential interactions between the communications and critical utility infrastructures in order to use them to provide countermeasures embedding security, resilience and survivability into the Future Networks of smart Critical infrastructure.

Success Impact

SUCCESS results will ensure the security of Critical infrastructures based on data produced by smart field equipment, by:

  • Driving business innovations in customer-centric Critical Infrastructures networks with our fast forward communications approach and our interactive services of events,
  • Accelerating the growth of European service and product companies in the rapidly growing utility security markets with our research and innovation results, many of which are applicable to a wide range of IoT applications.

  • Creating jobs in start-up and growing companies by working with accelerators, and

  • Training students on our novel approaches to securing utility networks and devices in a free Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) course.

The research concepts, implemented countermeasures and field trials will also address three different timescales, which will contain a comprehensive set of results with short, medium and long term impact, respectively, on the security of Critical Infrastructures.

In conjunction with these timescales, all work packages will have a focus on the three use cases defined to encapsulate critical scenarios, prioritized by DSOs, for investigation in the project: 

  • Use Case 1: Secure enhanced wide area flexible generation monitoring for optimized network operation
  • Use Case 2: Secure optimized management and coordination of EVs charging with DSO operation
  • Use Case 3: Secure AMI enabling Real Time Demand Response and Optimized storage management for DSO Local Balancing

The success project