Applied Cyber Security and the Smart Grid
Implementing Security Controls into the Modern Power Infrastructure
By Eric D. Knapp, Raj Samani
Publisher: Elsevier / Syngress
Final Release Date: February 2013
Pages: 224

Many people think of the Smart Grid as a power distribution group built on advanced smart metering—but that’s just one aspect of a much larger and more complex system. The "Smart Grid" requires new technologies throughout energy generation, transmission and distribution, and even the homes and businesses being served by the grid. This also represents new information paths between these new systems and services, all of which represents risk, requiring a more thorough approach to where and how cyber security controls are implemented.

This insight provides a detailed architecture of the entire Smart Grid, with recommended cyber security measures for everything from the supply chain to the consumer.

  • Discover the potential of the Smart Grid
  • Learn in depth about its systems
  • See its vulnerabilities and how best to protect it
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Useful book but many issues with grammar

By Roy

from Cary, NC

Verified Reviewer

Comments about oreilly Applied Cyber Security and the Smart Grid:

Note: I received this book through the O'Reilly Blogger Review Program.

For this review, I should say upfront that I am not in the energy or security field, so I cannot comment on the technical accuracy or usefulness of the information in this book for the professionals who are implementing smart grid technology as their day-to-day work. My background is in environmental policy, where the term 'smart grid' is an oft-used buzzword. Having been to several conferences with smart grid sessions that were big on ideas but short on details, my hope with reading Applied Cyber Security and the Smart Grid was to learn enough about how the smart grid is implemented so I can have more informed conversations with friends and colleagues about the role that policy could play in facilitating the deployment of smart grid technologies and addressing some of the concerns that the authors raise.

Overall, the book fulfilled my needs by providing a more detailed explanation of the services a smart grid can provide as well as some of the security challenges such a grid faces. As someone who is outside the energy/security field, the information in the more technical chapters went over my head, but the authors do provide a higher-level survey of security concerns in earlier chapters, which I feel should be enough for me to help frame future conversations that would be more policy-focused. I was also encouraged to see privacy given its own chapter, and although I wish the authors spent a bit more time discussing the various privacy issues that come with the smart grid (the chapter is only 11 pages long), to see professionals in the field acknowledging privacy as a serious concern is encouraging.

Unfortunately, substandard writing quality in several areas of the book takes away from the important messages the authors are trying to convey. While the writing quality varies greatly from chapter to chapter, chapters 1 and 4 in particular suffer from awkward sentence construction as well as many serious grammatical errors (multiple instances of comma splices, sentence fragments, improper or inconsistent punctuation usage, etc.). Although criticisms about grammar may sound nit-picky, the prevalence and severity of errors in the prose of these two chapters are such that a second printing addressing these grammatical issues would make for a much stronger book and a much better reading experience.

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