ISLAMABD:Expressing concerns over the continuous occurrence of cyber security incidents in the national energy sector, National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) Chairman, Tauseef Farooqi stressed the need to develop a comprehensive cyber-security governance model to deal with the challenge and ensure security of critical infrastructure.
He made these remarks while addressing a session on “Cyber Security Challenges in Critical Infrastructure (Power Sector)” at the Nepra Tower on Tuesday. The eventjointly organised by TechAccess Pakistan with its industrial partner RTA. The purpose of the event was to raise awareness amongst public and private sector energy entities about the global risks of cyber-attacks. A large number of power sector professionals, trade and business representatives and Nepra members attended the session.
Highlighting the importance of the session, Nepra Chairman said, “Cyber-space is the 21st century’s new warzone. Most of the cyber-attacks to have taken place in 2021 and 2022 were directed against the energy sector. Cyber-security is more challenging within the power sector due to dispersed geo-locations of generation plants and interdependence between OT and IT infrastructure”.
He added that cyber-security incidents are now “Ecosystem” challenges because it is not just one electricity supply chain actor that is target but the weakest link in the entire power system.
” In his remarks, Chief Technology Officer (CTO), Tariq Malik emphasised that the “recent cyber-attacks executed via viruses or other known methods against primary energy operators are once again reminding us that we are now facing a very expensive ‘digital pandemic’ which has become an endemic in security monitoring.”
He explained that in fact, many cyber incidents are emerging at the global level on several OT systems on different industrial technological plants with varying levels of frequency.