The good, the bad and the ugly are all inside the concept of the smart grid. While electricity has mostly been a one-way street to business and consumer users, the smart grid will build a two-way street with information coming and going. So the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) recently issued a second draft of its Smart Grid Cyber Security Strategy and Requirements, which identifies more than 120 interfaces linking diverse devices, systems, and classifies these connections according to the level of damage that could result from a security breach.

After reviewing the comments received and completing ongoing analyses of requirements and relevant standards, the working group will finalize the Smart Grid cyber security strategy. NIST expects to issue a completed report by early summer. Compared with the initial version, the newly drafted cybersecurity report contains significantly expanded sections on privacy, vulnerability categories, analyses of the potential security issues, and the overall approach to achieving Smart Grid cyber security.

To download the second draft, go to