Cybersecurity has become a critical factor for reliability and quality of supply (QoS) in smart grids, as
more and more distributed energy resources are integrated with the grid. The vulnerabilities will arise
particularly from the higher degree of connectivity between the smart components, as well as between
market processes. The need for secure authentication and transaction at every interface between
devices/subsystems and processes will therefore become more important as the grid itself becomes more
distributed and intelligent, and communication capacities increase. Security is thus considered to be an
ubiquitous requirement and needs to be integrated with most, if not all activities within a smart grid
ecosystem.
MAS2TERING, being a technology driven programme of research, focuses on secure authentication and
communication in a heterogeneous environment where legacy standards and applications will need to be
accommodated along with on-going and future standards and applications. Particular cyber security
challenges addressed by MAS2TERING are:

  • Development of software tools, for integration into the MAS2TERING Multi-Agent Systems
    platform, to investigate risks of breach of privacy and security, and reliability and QoS from
    insecure authentication in a heterogeneous environment where legacy standards and applications
    need to remain in operation alongside advanced standards. This challenge applies to all project’s use
    cases.
  • To deliver software modules, for them to be integrated into the MAS2TERING Multi-Agent Systems
    platform, to identify and quantify loss of data, breach of privacy and vulnerability from
    heterogeneous communication infrastructure (wireless, wired, PLC) and their impacts on grid
    reliability and QoS. Again, this challenge applies to all project’s use cases.
  • Develop guidelines for information security management and highlight and disseminate possible
    enhancements to a selection of on-going standardisation efforts from the lessons learned in
    evaluating grid security in all use cases.