Cybersecurity should be integrated into the early stages of clean energy deployment to avoid the vulnerability of electric power grid operations in the future, according to a long-term study published by the Department of Energy.
The cybersecurity report, released Thursday, cites the IT challenges associated with a large-scale installation of distributed energy and recommends grid resilience approaches.
Some of the department’s proposed strategies for DER providers are using multifactor authentication encryption and similar standards in DER systems, incentivizing cyber resilience and adopting a zero-trust approach, and prioritizing security for employees, customers and suppliers.
Alejandro Moreno, acting assistant secretary for energy efficiency and renewable energy at DOE, said power grid security and resilience are vital in scaling up clean energy deployment.
“This report is meant to start these critical conversations between the clean energy and cybersecurity communities, particularly as we begin to make historic investments in the U.S. electric grid through the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act,” said Puesh Kumar, director of the DOE Office of Cybersecurity, Energy Security and Emergency Response.