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Cyber risk of EV chargers

ENCS, the European Network of Cyber Security, and E.DSO, the European Distribution System Operators’ Association for Smart Grids, have announced the launch of cyber-security requirements for electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure. The bodies describe it as the first in a series of security standards for smart grid components. This first one is for securing the little-understood cyber risk of EV chargers.

The requirements, which apply across Europe, provide cities and distribution network operators with a practical set of considerations when procuring EV chargers and harmonise security standards. Integrating the views of industry stakeholders, the new standards are already in use by the Dutch EV knowledge and innovation centre ElaadNL, after they initially approached ENCS to make and maintain the requirements.

Anjos Nijk, Managing Director of ENCS, said: “From a security standpoint, the potential impact of EVs on the grid simply can’t be understated. By 2020, there’s expected to be nearly 220,000 EV chargers installed. At this scale, these requirements will be vital in neutralising the growing threat from hackers who could potentially cause a blackout through poorly-protected EV chargers.”

Joachim Schneider, Chairman of the Technology Committee of E.DSO said: “These requirements are not only key to the long-term vision of our work with ENCS, but lay a strong foundation for meaningful and proper certification. You can only really achieve this with requirements born out of a collaborative effort between grid operators and cyber experts, which was a key element in our project. This joint expertise will be key in encouraging EV charger manufacturers towards a security-by-design approach.”

And Onoph Caron, managing director of ElaadNL, the initial beneficiary of the requirements, said: “As e-mobility and smart charging increase, it’s vital that cyber security to protect them follows. In the future, the EV fleet will represent grid-scale cumulative power capacity; compromising EV charging could be as disruptive as compromising a power plant. Thanks to our cooperation with ENCS (European Network for Cyber ​​Security) and E.DSO, municipalities, provinces and other tendering organisations, now have a professional set of cyber security requirements which will ensure the electricity network remains reliable, both now and in the future.”


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