Enhance Data Center Security

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How utilities can protect operations from penetration

BY MICHAEL STUBER, Itron

For utilities deploying Smart Grid solutions, the major security concern is often the field devices. Utilities and vendors have long understood that field devices such as meters, switches, routers, and concentrators are directly exposed and vulnerable to attacks. The power industry places a lot of focus on ensuring that the aforementioned devices are secure. Additionally, most communications technologies used for the Smart Grid are secured at the network level. The exposed nature of field devices causes vendors and utilities to perform extensive penetration testing to find and resolve security issues before they become opportunities for attackers. While it is easy to become focused on field devices, utilities must also survey the data center when planning and deploying a Smart Grid solution.

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