In The News: Protecting the Nation’s Electrical Grid
Sparks, Nev., August 24, 2021 – There is $250 million in the bipartisan infrastructure bill specifically for products like Sierra Nevada Corporation’s (SNC) Binary Armor® cybersecurity family of products to protect the nation’s operational technology (OT) – the electrical distribution equipment, valves and pumps – that function as the backbone of the entire nation’s electrical, oil and gas, and water processing and distribution networks.
Pete Fischer, Senior Director of Cyber Programs, Sierra Nevada Corporation who oversees Binary Armor development will speak on a panel National Regulatory Research Institute (NRRI) on Wednesday, August 25 about the ongoing threats to OT and the importance of focusing mitigation solutions on already validated and tested commercial-off-the-shelf technology like Binary Armor.
Excerpts from Pete’s remarks are below.
- Binary Armor video: https://vimeo.com/405548197
- Recent “Manufacturing Marvels” story on Binary Armor: https://vimeo.com/576875960
Excerpts from Pete Fischer, Senior Director of Cyber Programs, Sierra Nevada Corporation
“We appreciate that Congress has recognized the increasing cyber threats to our nation’s electric grid and making the critical investments required to enhance grid security. This money is needed.
“The December 2015, hack of three electrical distribution companies in Ukraine temporarily disrupted the power supply to many consumers. It was the first known successful cyberattack on a power grid and not the last.
“Cyber criminals and foreign adversaries are constantly testing our systems and seeking opportunities to hack our operational technology. Our national critical infrastructure is too easy a target.
“Two years ago a Siemens and the Ponemon Institute found that, “[T]he majority of global utilities surveyed say, “cyber threats present a greater business risk to their OT than their IT environment. Utilities are concerned by the unique characteristics of OT environments, including a focus on availability, reliability and safety.
“Without Binary Armor ensuring the integrity of its critical systems, Colonial Pipeline was forced to disconnect its OT systems to prevent the hackers from accessing the pipeline’s OT. This operational technology – the mechanical electrical circuit breakers, valves and pumps – controls the flow of oil in the pipeline, and functions as the backbone of the entire nation’s electrical, oil and gas, and water processing and distribution networks.
“Binary Armor has proven itself through successful performance and demanding certifications. We are proud of the track record of protecting utility SCADA and control systems for the U.S. military and commercial customers since 2014.”