Skip to comments.FBI: Smart Meter Hacks Likely to Spread
Posted on 04/09/2012 3:17:58 PM PDT by dila813
A series of hacks perpetrated against so-called smart meter installations over the past several years may have cost a single U.S. electric utility hundreds of millions of dollars annually, the FBI said in a cyber intelligence bulletin obtained by KrebsOnSecurity. The law enforcement agency said this is the first known report of criminals compromising the hi-tech meters, and that it expects this type of fraud to spread across the country as more utilities deploy smart grid technology.
(Excerpt) Read more at krebsonsecurity.com ...
You don't get it. Let me explain it to you. Let's say I have used 1345 KW when the power outage occurs. When the power is restored the meter instead of showing 1345 shows blinking 0000. Do you think the electric company will charge me for 0000kw or will they guesstimate what I have used and bill me for 1955? How can I prove to them that I have only used 1345? Take daily photos? power outages happen unexpectedly.
Keeping it simple: If I were a betting man, I would LAY MONEY that nobody could hack our encrypted network without inside knowledge.
We use the same AES encryption algorithm that both the credit card network and secure web access uses. Heck, the NSA uses the same algorithm to encrypt top-secret overseas dispatches.
"Those have been hacked, " you say. Bull. Look it up: All credit card hacking you have heard about was NOT from hacking the encrypted data stream itself, but from compromising some web server. We have iron-clad back office software. Nobody is hacking that, either.
This is just more irrational hatred toward American companies who should be applauded for creating manufacturing jobs here.
We don't make our stuff in China. We tried it, and China don't get it done for industrial equipment. If your iPhone craps out, nobody dies. A disconnect electric meter pops, and somebody could die.
Really? We designers are THAT dumb that we didn't think about that?
We have in each and every meter (electric, water, gas):
1. Battery backup.
2. Special memory (EEPROM) that doesn't need power.
3. Flash memory that doesn't need power. You have a thumb drive, don't you? That doesn't need power, does it? Same thing here.
Must have been a dumb meter. /sarc.
What do you think a "smart meter" is? It's just a two-way version of the old telemetry meters, that allows remote disconnect and reconnect, and remote reset of demand data.
It doesn't brainwash you.
It doesn't spy on you.
It doesn't ray-gun your cats.
We don't have get enough money to build those functions into those meters. They barely cost more than bottle of wine to build.
“Bull. Look it up: All credit card hacking you have heard about was NOT from hacking the encrypted data stream itself, but from compromising some web server”
You have only a technical criticism here....hacking, cracking, lets not play word games......
Bottom line, Capital investment ... ROI non-existent because the full cost wasn’t taken into account... take off the rose color glasses. These meters weren’t needed.
Smart Meters are for hourly billing vs digital meters and remotely reading of analog meters.
Power-line communication isn't used much anymore, and never was in residential electric, except in a few "demo" areas. Never caught on because of all the problems getting the signal past the transformers. That requires large capacitors, which cost a lot of money.
Drive-by radio and fixed-network (also called mesh) wireless are the two methods that have been used for about the last 30 years.
Yes, it's been that long. I have 1-way gas meters still in the field transmitting that are over 20 years old.
You don't know what you're talking about, and you talking to someone who does.
ROI is totally there. How many companies in the US make electromechanical single-phase meters anymore? We quit 4 years ago, our competitor quit long before that, and GE is totally out of the single-phase business (including electronic meters). Maintaining the tooling to continue manufacturing precision analog meters does NOT make financial sense.
Electronic (smart included) meters do not go out of calibration. They don't overheat. They don't get stuck. They just keep working, and they allow the utilities to plan their peak generation capacity, report outages (despite the claims of "all zeroes when the power goes out"), help load-shedding, save money on truck visits for disconnect and connect, and a whole host of other things.
Electronic smart meters are here to say, people. Get used to it, or get yourself disconnected from the grid.
PROVE IT DOES THAT.
Our competitors' don't.
The US government wouldn't allow it.
Nor would the power utility associations.
Battery backup for electronic metering has been around at least since 1980 (as far back as I go with this stuff).
How dumb do you think engineers are?
You said it. Maybe you designers are THAT dumb. Consider the topic and article of this thread.
Smack your forehead some more.
Before you belittle those who question these digital meters, remember, if it weren’t for these meters pushed on us, you wouldn’t have a job. Who’s to say you didn’t omit something in those meters just so you can keep getting work to tweek things.
No, they are actually for selectively cutting off folks during the power shortages. And, of course, they are going to increase those shortages by using the EPA to shut down perfectly good coal generating plants. So unless you live amongst Holder's people, you are going to have some hot summer days. Although not as hot as I will have.
The thing is, at some point the information has to be decrypted. Perhaps it's a memory location on a chip in the smartmeter, or as easy as an optics port with a set encryption protocol that can't be changed without changing the whole smartmeter, or it's an easy remote reprogramming to get around people who might develop an optical transmitter to hack the system, or it might just be as easy as a pair of magnets that cause it to cease recording electrical usage.
It would be a fool who would try to spend time and energy hacking the datastream for a credit card processor, especially since you could walk in to most any restaurant, say you're there to upgrade the credit card machine, and you'll probably have two weeks of capturing swipes and pin numbers before the business owner catches on that there's not a penny going into his bank account, and probably even longer before the credit card companies start locking down those accounts.
How did they crack those uncrackable bluray discs? They used a leftover debug port on a blueray player to capture the encryption key. How did they crack some very sophisticated DRM on encoded music files? They watched the registers on the music program and when it saved the decode key, they did too.
Smartmeters will remain secure only so long as no one ever has physical access to the meters themselves, and that all employees who have the ability to access those meters remain loyal. Two big problems with this: One, meters are attached to houses, on the outside, and can be stolen. Especially a house that recently caught fire. And quite a number of those employees could easily find better income circumventing those meters then maintaining them for $15 an hour.
I applaud the belief that your datastream is secure. Just remember that one half of that encryption system is out in the wild. But never mistake the idea that since your communications system is secure, that the system is, by extension, secure. Our nation has found out that over and over again the hard way.
“Electronic (smart included) meters” you don’t know what you are talking about.
Not all electronic meters are smart, and we are only talking about the smart grid meters.
Also, we are talking economics which you apparently don’t know anything about. Perfectly good analog and digital meters ripped out to be replaced by smart meters was just stupidity.
I’ve had smart meters on electric and gas for over a year and my usage hasn’t varried at all except for gas usage durring cold and compared to same montha with the analog meters there isn’t any difference.
With a rental it’s real handy when changing tennants, they read the metewrs when i’m on the phone and get the final bills by e-mail the same day.
Same thing for turning it on for a new tennant it is done instantly with a phone call.
That isn’t a smart meter.
“That isnt a smart meter.”
That’s what SD&E and the Glendale Power Company call them!
A digital meter isn’t the same as a smart meter.
Digital meters have been around since the 80s.
That isn’t a smart meter.
Of course the Utility said everything was just fine.
No, they are actually for selectively cutting off folks during the power shortages. And, of course, they are going to increase those shortages by using the EPA to shut down perfectly good coal generating plants.
Like everything else in which the government is involved, I am certain there will be many unintended negative consequences.