Electrical Grid Cyberattack Defense Plan Set to Begin

June 12, 20

 

Securing critical computer networks against attacks is the goal of new legislation that goes into effect on September 1st.

The law, signed by Governor Greg Abbott on Tuesday, requires a partnership among ERCOT, the Public Utility Commission of Texas and electricity providers (including the LCRA and similar utilities) to come up with a “framework” for interagency communications and cooperation.

Sen. Kelly Hancock‘s SB 936 creates a cybersecurity monitor for the Texas electric grid by tying together networks from the two agencies and electricity service providers aimed at defending against cyberattacks and related threats.

The legislation requires the PUC to find and designate a monitor, which will also work with ERCOT.

The legislation calls for partnerships to be formed, identification of computer-related vulnerabilities and design of defenses to cope with cyber-threats.

It also requires the PUC to allow electric utilities to recover the costs of instituting the program