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Thursday, October 27 • 9:30am - 10:00am
Building an Operational Cyber Program for Small to Medium Critical Infrastructure Entities

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The NRECA Threat Analysis Center (TAC) is the new Cooperative Operational Technology (OT) cybersecurity threat analysis and sharing platform, designed to improve the speed, coordination, and effectiveness of Co-op threat response. This initiative is designed to serve the small to medium utility community with right sized tools and products – is technology agnostics, and not for profit.  

The TAC is designed to be both a tool and a community, enabling collaboration and assistance among cybersecurity professionals at NRECA, Co-ops, and the wider intelligence community. This vision is dependent on establishing a network of cybersecurity professionals across the Co-op space. Therefore, as part of the TAC program, NRECA will launch the Grow/Keep Initiative, a workforce development initiative to address many of the challenges Co-ops face in hiring and retaining cybersecurity personnel. This center

As small, rural organizations, many Co-ops struggle to compete in the cybersecurity personnel marketplace. As electric utilities with expanding use of DER and IoT devices, Co-ops also require personnel who understand the critical infrastructure they serve and the associated risks of being compromised. Such “unicorns” are rare and expensive. The workforce Initiative will address these challenges by using the collective Co-op strength to compete in the marketplace while also growing cybersecurity expertise from the local Co-op communities. The resulting skilled and expansive network of professionals will act as a semi-shared resource, so every Co-op has the resources they need to resist and recover from threats.

With these efforts, the Threat Center Initiative will help ensure that no Co-op is too small to be protected, every Co-op has a community of support, and the nation’s power grid is safer.

Learning Objectives: 
  • Right Sizing of Products and Solutions for Small to Medium Entities 
  • Information Sharing initiatives for LMI communities 
  • Building a novel workforce

avatar for Emma Stewart, Ph.D.

Emma Stewart, Ph.D.

Chief Scientist, National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA)
Emma Stewart, Ph.D. is chief scientist of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) where she works to expand the leadership of NRECA and electric co-ops in the scientific and engineering communities. She leads the Business & Technology Strategies team to further... Read More →

Thursday October 27, 2022 9:30am - 10:00am EDT
Windsor C