How Would We Know?
Modern power system monitoring, protection, automation, and control benefit from communications and computing technology. Along with the benefits of these technologies come some risks of electronic or cyber intrusion. There are legitimate concerns about how inadequate information security (cyber security) could affect electric power systems and other critical infrastructure. A fundamental question is “How would we know if our assets are being explored and exploited?” This presentation addresses this question using the many tools readily available in devices and systems in service today.
David E. Whitehead, P.E., is the vice president of research and development at Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories, Inc. (SEL) and oversees SEL’s security and information services department as well as the government services division. He joined SEL in 1994 and has held the positions of hardware engineer, research Engineer and chief engineer of the government services division. Prior to joining SEL, Mr. Whitehead worked for General Dynamics, Electric Boat Division as a combat systems engineer. He received his BSEE from Washington State University in 1989 and his MSEE from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1994. He is a registered Professional Engineer in Washington, New York and North Carolina. Mr. Whitehead is a senior member of the IEEE and also chairs the Power and Energy Society Substations C6 group that addresses serial cryptographic protocols. Mr. Whitehead currently holds forty-three patents worldwide with several others pending.
The seminar series is presented by the Trustworthy Cyber Infrastructure for the Power Grid (TCIPG) Project, an $18 million multi-university research effort whose partner institutions include the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Arizona State University, Dartmouth, and Washington State University. The TCIPG Project, a successor to the earlier NSF-funded TCIP Center, was founded in 2009 with support from the U.S. Department of Energy and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. It is housed in the Information Trust Institute, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.