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Cybersecurity in the US Power Industry

  • February 2015
  • 61 pages
  • Frost & Sullivan
Report ID: 2672052


Table of Contents

Key Findings

The power industry workforce is perceived as a critical vulnerability. Concern is greatest for attacks that are internally spawned; trained cybersecurity teams are a priority.
Layered strategies, along with restricted access policies, help to reduce vulnerabilities related to remote access.
Overall, regulatory compliance is the main driver for cybersecurity investment; many utilities are expecting to spend more than $ million through 2017 to be compliant.
Utilities prefer a hybrid in-house/outsource approach to security solutions rather than completely outsourcing them.

Current Outlook (2014)

Utilities are focusing on compliance rather than a holistic security solution.
Vendor strategies are more focused on proven expertise and experience, and do not engage in incorporating compliance requirements.
Solutions are more focused on protecting the integrity, availability, and confidentiality of the grid.
Antivirus software, patch management, and security intelligence solutions are frequently used. The industry is slowly moving from a reactive approach to a proactive approach.
Vendors must have the ability to offer customized, packaged solutions, and have a strong track record in cybersecurity implementation and solution-support.
The complexity of regulations and lack of sufficient resources in the industry restricts the development of more proactive solutions.

Future Outlook (2017)

Specific power generation facilities, such as nuclear plants, and the entire power supply chain will be the targets for advanced persistent threats.
A more collaborative operating space will exist, with standalone information technology (IT) and automation vendors, industrial security solution providers, and government entities partnering to develop a total security solution for the industry.
Higher awareness among end users will result in demand for mid- and high-level solutions to provide continuous asset visibility, and for more automated analysis tools and advanced authentication techniques.
Pervasive security monitoring, alerts, and incident response is the key to effective risk management. Innovative tools and solutions will be inbuilt into the smart grid and virtual grids.
Several siloed tools will be incorporated into a holistic and integrated security solution that is flexible to adapt to industry trends.
The lack of reliable support systems and advanced communication, sensing, power, and tracking technologies in the security offering will hamper adoption of new solutions.

The aim of this study is to research and analyze various parameters including industry drivers, challenges, customer behavior, vendor support, and best practices that influence the cybersecurity market for the power industry.

•To evaluate and assess the current state of cybersecurity preparedness
•To determine unmet needs and pain points related to cybersecurity
•To understand buying behavior
•To identify industry best practices, next-generation practices, and new business models

Key Questions this Study will Answer

What are the current states of awareness and concern regarding cybersecurity in the US power industry?
What are some of the critical challenges facing the industry regarding awareness and adoption, and how are those challenges being addressed?
How can vendors optimize their support role in executing a cybersecurity strategy?
What new business models are emerging from the evolution of smart grids?
What are the best practices related to cybersecurity in the power industry?

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