MEAG Power, Participant & Public Power News
Cybersecurity Working Group Meeting Focuses on Funding & Resources
The ECG/MEAG Power Cybersecurity Working Group Meeting on March 10, 2022, was insightful and detailed – and especially relevant in light of potential cyber-attacks related to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
The meeting focused on critical topics to assist Participants in advancing and securing their infrastructure with readily available funding and resources. An overview of the presentations follows, and they can be viewed in their entirety at: ECG/MEAG Cybersecurity Working Group Meeting Presentations.
Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act
Amy Thomas and Sarah Mathias of the American Public Power Association (APPA) discussed the $1.2 trillion Infrastructure and Jobs Act signed into law by President Biden that provides funding for the following:
- Transportation Infrastructure, particularly as it relates to electric vehicles
- Grid Resiliency Infrastructure
- Enhanced grid security through public-private partnerships
- Incentives for advanced cybersecurity tech investments
- Rural and Municipal Utility Advanced Cybersecurity Grant and Technological Assistance Program
- Enhanced Grid Security
Georgia Tech Research Institute Opportunities
Trevor Lewis of the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI) presented a potential research opportunity. GTRI has applied for a Department of Energy (DOE) grant that would establish a “Cybersecurity Center” for energy sector cybersecurity research. If awarded the grant, GTRI will establish partnerships with energy utility providers to conduct research projects to improve their security posture.
CISA Directives and Available Services
Carter Manucy of the Florida Municipal Power Authority (FMPA) presented on the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) Directives and other available services. He pointed out four areas to focus on: reducing the likelihood of a damaging cyber intrusion, quickly detecting a potential intrusion, ensuring that the organization is prepared to respond if an intrusion occurs, and maximizing the organization’s resilience to a catastrophic cyber incident.
John Daho, MEAG Power’s cyber security manager, explained that the Log4j vulnerability is an open-source logging framework for Java utilized by software developers to log error information (e.g. debugging or communicating with internal directory services). Additionally, John explained how the government, industry, and MEAG Power responded to the threat. He also cited links to valuable cybersecurity resources and tools to assist utilities.
Roundtable Discussion – CARES Act
Ronnie Barrett of the Marietta Board of Lights and Water (BLW) facilitated the roundtable discussion centered on the CARES Act. He mentioned some of the federal bills related to the COVID Pandemic that were signed into law to support prevention, preparation, and response efforts. He shared the types of IT purchases and requests Marietta BLW made with their funding under the CARES Act.
Meetings & Events
Jul. 20 (at Annual Meeting), Aug. 18All meeting dates
Participant Reception & Breakfast, GMA Annual Convention
Jun. 25-26See details
Jul. 18-20See details
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