SIEGate: Secure Information Exchange Gateway for Electric Grid Operations

The primary objective of this project (Sanders, PI) is to develop a secure and flexible “appliance,” or Secure Information Exchange Gateway (SIE Gateway), that will serve as the point of interface for all types of real-time data exchanged between a utility control center and other control centers, utilities, and regulatory and oversight entities. By supporting all inter-utility data-sharing needs securely and in one place, the SIE Gateway will improve the security posture of a control center by consolidating services and reducing the external attack surface. The SIE Gateway will be designed and built 1) to resist cyber attacks, 2) to protect the confidentiality and integrity of the growing amount of real-time information being exchanged to assure the reliability of the bulk electric system, and 3) to interoperate with existing and proposed data formats and networking technologies. The project includes execution of a commercialization strategy for the gateway that will encourage adoption and deployment by the electric sector.

The University of Illinois team will be responsible for researching, designing, and developing a secure hardware-software platform for the SIEGate appliance. Additionally, the University of Illinois will develop security libraries and services to enable key management, access control, and data security functionality for the gateway application. The University of Illinois will also perform testing and security assessment of the developed SIEGate appliance and provide support in the demonstration and commercialization phases of the project.

William H. Sanders is PI; Klara Nahrstedt, Rakesh Bobba, and Tim Yardley are co-PIs.

(subcontract from the Grid Protection Alliance (GPA); Department of Energy prime contract)