How Real are Security Threats to America’s Utilities?

How Real are Security Threats to America’s Utilities?

Cybersecurity is becoming a more recognized word in today’s society. Therefore, it is not surprising that cyber-attacks on the nation’s infrastructure is a growing concern. An example of such concern would be the nation’s water supply and the protection of water utilities from cyber-attacks. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is developing a framework to protect the nation’s infrastructure from cyber-attacks. In its preliminary framework released in October, the NIST provides guidance to federal agencies to ensure that the infrastructure they regulate is protected against cyber-attacks. In an executive order signed by President Obama, regulatory agencies such as EPA are to begin a review process to determine whether they have adequate legal authority to address potential risks involving drinking water. At the same time that the NIST is developing its framework, the American Water Works Association is attempting to develop its own guidance for addressing potential cyber-attacks on the nation’s drinking water supply. Stay tuned to see which of the above frameworks ultimately is put into place to address what is a very significant issue regarding our nation’s infrastructure.

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