In recent years, there has been a strong surge in the adoption of smart metering. This trend, triggered by rising energy prices and the increased awareness for energy-efficiency is not expected to slow down anytime soon, but rather to accelerate.
Smart metering, which enables full transparency and higher efficiency in the use of water, gas and electricity, is based on the connection of multiple endpoints and the continuous collection, transfer, exchange, and storage of data. These objectives could not have been achieved without the integration of communication technology infrastructure required to collect, integrate, and synthesize data provided by smart meters and other interconnected components. As a result, this critical data necessitates adequate protection and security.
Based on the information collected through constant monitoring of energy flows in private households or organizations, smart metering enables greater efficiency in energy consumption and helps in resource conservation through targeted control and management of facilities and devices. As part of smart grids, it is regarded as an important building block for the future of the energy sector.
To provide this overview to the end-user, the intelligent meters for resources and energies must be digitally connected with each other in order to exchange data.
In some smart metering setups, all data regarding the delivery and consumption of gas, water, and electricity is delivered to a meter-reading company. The meter-reading company can analyze this data and provide it to the smart grid operator, enabling them to optimize their smart grid configuration, for example, by optimizing load management.
As the collected data allows to draw conclusions on the lifestyle and habits of the users, all data collected, stored, transferred, and used must be protected. The connected devices used in this smart meter environment must also be secured against unauthorized access. Manipulation of the measurement values caused by targeted attacks can have repercussions on the energy systems and networks such as an undersupply or complete halt to supply.