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System Continuously Monitors Grid Network, Identifies and Addresses Cybersecurity Vulnerabilities

C3 Energy has released C3 Grid Cybersecurity Analytics, which provides utility cybersecurity teams with advanced diagnostics and predictive tools to identify, monitor, and reduce the risks of grid cybersecurity vulnerabilities.

C3 Grid Cybersecurity Analytics provides both a broad-based and granular view of the normal operating state of the grid network, establishing a baseline of communication traffic levels, individual asset activity, and interactions between assets. In near-real time, the solution clearly identifies deviations from the baseline, such as unusually high or low network communications or unexpected patterns of traffic. Intelligent alerts warn cybersecurity teams of questionable activity for physical field-based investigation, IT team diagnosis and response, or other follow-up. Advanced analytics detect potential security issues across hardware types, data sources, and protocols, including AMI meters, grid sensors, application data logs, SCADA/ICCP systems, and WAN/LAN systems.

“Today’s utilities are faced with any number of threats – physical, electrical, communications, and software-based – and their reaction time to these threats impacts safety, daily operations, and the bottom line. C3 Energy’s utility clients made it clear that they needed a solution for the early identification and monitoring of vulnerabilities,” said Ed Abbo, President and Chief Technology Officer at C3 Energy. “With C3 Grid Cybersecurity Analytics, potential security breaches and attempted attacks on network hardware are detected, displayed, and analyzed on a user-friendly interface so that operators have advanced warning and adequate lead-time to address emerging threats.”

C3 Grid Cybersecurity Analytics is a next-generation approach for identifying, mitigating, and managing security risks. The application identifies specific threats – such as SCADA data or command message manipulation, improper authentication or access control, or unexpected hardware or software configuration changes – and provides risk mitigation recommendations. The solution also helps utility organizations to develop strategies and plans that improve the coordination of threat responses and optimize the long-term handling of security issues.

“At the University of California, Berkeley, we have been leading a National Science Foundation cybersecurity center called TRUST, which focuses on the intersection of cyber and physical security for the nation’s critical infrastructure systems, like energy and transportation. In the energy space, utility operators understand that cybersecurity is a real problem and finding a solution is crucial,” said S. Shankar Sastry, Dean of Engineering at University of California, Berkeley. “C3 Grid Cybersecurity Analytics helps utilities quickly identify potential vulnerabilities, making the grid more secure.”

The solution uses advanced machine-learning algorithms and anomaly detection techniques to identify and assess potential threats to the grid network. By analyzing large volumes of disparate data from across the network, the solution rapidly identifies emerging threats. The machine-learning algorithms use this data to evolve automatically over time, so that utilities can continuously adapt to evolving cyber threats.

C3 Grid Cybersecurity Analytics is built on the C3 Energy Analytics Engine™, a robust data integration and analytics platform that federates data at processing rates of up to 6.5 billion records an hour – in a fully provisioned, hosted, secure, private, cloud-scale analytic infrastructure. The C3 Energy Analytics Engine enables petabyte-scale grid data analysis that leverages the capabilities of both modern and legacy information systems to aggregate all relevant historical and operational data into a common, cloud-scale utility data image.

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