The Joint Critical Infrastructure Partnership (JCIP) conference will be held at CenterPoint Energy on Wed, Aug 3, 2011. The full day conference will have a number of nationally and internationally known subject matter experts.
There will be presentations from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and the Houston Fusion Center. In addition we will have private sector as well as academia represented among the speakers.
The focus of the program is Energy (Electric, Oil and Gas), and Chemicals. Although other sectors are welcome, the sessions will be focused specifically for those sectors.
Speakers will provide insight on current threats to physical, as well as cyber assets.
A 26-year old American, Sharif Mobley, now under arrest in Yemen for terrorist activities, became an Islamic militant while working for six years at several nuclear plants in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Maryland; the man -- who told fellow workers "We are brothers in the union, but if a holy war comes, look out" -- had unescorted access to the interior of the plants; to have unescorted access to secure areas of a nuclear power plant, a person must undergo a background investigation, including a criminal record check and a psychological assessment -- but the rules did not account for temporary workers who migrate from plant to plant, as Mobley did...
Much of the report was withheld from the public release because it “revealed security vulnerabilities” at nuclear facilities, said Stephen D. Dingbaum, the commission’s assistant inspector general for audits.
Shane writes that the inspector general found that Mobley did have unescorted access to the interior of the plants but did not have access to computers or high-security information.
The Office of Infrastructure Protection’s (IP) Sector-Specific Agency Executive Management Office (SSA EMO) and Partnership and Outreach Division (POD), with assistance from the Surveillance Detection workgroup, developed a 90-minute, highly interactive and visual, virtual roundtable, designed to raise the awareness of suspicious activities and behaviors that might indicate potential surveillance activities. An invitation to the roundtable is attached.
The target audience for this roundtable will be a full-range of employees working at critical infrastructure facilities, government agencies, governmental organizations, and private-sector owners and operators, including front-line supervisors such as security managers, facilities managers, human resource managers, compliance managers, and IT managers.
The worries about the smart grid introducing new vulnerabilities into U.S. critical infrastructure have already spawned a small industry the product of which aim to plug the grid’s security holes (“Smart Grid cybersecurity market to reach $3.7 billion by 2015,” 24 June 2010 HSNW ).
Security experts at the Black Hat conference in Las Vegas last week warned, again, that this accelerated deployment of smart-grid technology could leave critical infrastructure and private homes vulnerable to hackers. They warned that smart-grid hardware and software lacks the necessary safeguards to protect against meddling.
Understand the Smart Grid and how it is likely to evolve and be protected.
In its contemporary form, the Smart Grid encompasses the facilities,
control systems and protocols from the electric generators to the retail
customers and their usage patterns. The new Smart Grid will be a
target for foreign governments, terrorists, hackers, and disgruntled
employees that may be intent on causing damage to the U.S. electric grid
and utility system integrity. The Smart Grid will also offer a wealth
of benefits in energy conservation, control of electric generation, and
transmission of energy to best meet customers needs economically and
dependably. This course will explore the Smart grid vulnerabilities and
implementation options that may best protect and utilize new
technologies, with a focus on best practices around the country
The Houston InfraGard Chapter is collaborating with the local Department of Homeland Security (DHS) office to provide critical infrastructure damage assessment after any regional disaster. The DHS will monitor the Houston InfraGard Twitter account IMAHoustonSR for in the field updates. The Twitter account is only available for Houston InfraGard Chapter members and vetted agencies. All members and critical infrastructure partners are encouraged to "request to follow" the Twitter account well in advance of any incident.
Additional users will not be added 48 hours before any landfalling storm.
We've have had a great response to our Special Interest Group (SIG) program. Additional SIG's are being considered as we roll out the program.
Currently the following SIG's and Sector Chiefs have been established:
Sector Chiefs by Special
Interest Group (SIG)
Banking and Finance
Information Technology Mark Stingley
Oil & GasJohnny Lockett
If you complete the registration form and do not see your sector listed, but have an interest in establishing a SIG please add a note to the comments section on the form. A list of the defined sectors are included on the SIG web page, as well as additional information on the program: