The Issue

A global cyber war is underway and our nation faces damaging and potentially deadly attacks every day.

The attacks are launched by foreign adversaries – from Russia, China, Iran, and North Korea – against the U.S. electric grid, the lifeblood of our economy.

Our nation’s critical infrastructure, including the transportation, commercial facilities, emergency services, and healthcare sectors, now so critical for pandemic vaccine storage and distribution, depends on reliable electric power. If the grid is significantly damaged or taken down, our economy and our way of life will grind to a halt in a matter of days or weeks.

Every U.S. president since 1990 has acknowledged that U.S. infrastructure risks are high, that the threats are real, and each has pledged to address a looming catastrophe.  The number and sophistication of attacks has increased exponentially, from 60,000 per year in 2014 to millions per day in 2020. During 2020, nation-state hackers actually penetrated vital U.S. government agencies, hundreds of Fortune 500 companies, and critical infrastructure sectors — including electric utilities — in the most widespread cyber-attack ever reported.

Our Initiatives

Protect Our Power is an independent organization of former electric utility industry, military, government, and regulatory experts focused on the urgent need to make our electric grid more secure and resilient. POP experts work with all stakeholders to advocate for the coordination, knowledge-sharing, political cooperation, public support, and funding to ensure needed actions are taken to strengthen the grid. Protect Our Power is driving four primary initiatives designed to make the grid more resilient and secure:

Supply Chain Integrity

Working with relevant power industry manufacturers, vendors, and regulators, we are driving a collaborative process to develop a protocol by early 2021 to ensure the security and integrity of the power industry supply chain and prevent foreign intrusion. We will continue working with all relevant stakeholders to urgently promulgate this protocol into formal guidance.

Best Practices

Protect Our Power is working with the electric power industry, its vendors, and leading universities to identify, update and make available to power companies a compendium of Best Practices now being deployed to create a more resilient grid. This project enables power companies to rapidly identify vendors and solutions specific to a vulnerability and take immediate steps to repair, replace or strengthen grid-related equipment or systems.

Uniform State Regulation and Grid Investment Incentives

Building on two reports prepared for Protect Our Power by the Vermont Law School Institute for Energy and the Environment, we are working with the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) to finalize and implement a more uniform national approach to utility company regulation. The initiative includes creating appropriate incentives for investing in enhanced cybersecurity protection and broader sharing of critical cybersecurity attack and infiltration information.

Federal Legislation

Protect Our Power works with members of Congress and congressional committees of jurisdiction to provide technical and policy input to legislation designed to enhance resilience of our electric grid a priority in the national infrastructure agenda. This includes establishing appropriate funding for grid security investments, such as Federal Cyber Protection Tax-Exempt Bonds, direct legislative appropriations, or creating a cyber protection corporation that could provide immediate access to funding and expertise.

About Us

Protect Our Power was formed in 2016 as an independent, non-profit advocacy and educational organization focused solely on driving increased resilience of the U.S. electric grid to attacks.

Protect Our Power was formed in 2016 as an independent, non-profit, non-partisan advocacy and educational organization focused solely on driving increased resilience of the U.S. electric grid.

We have built a well-respected, credible team of experts who work with, not for, key stakeholders in industry, the Administration, Congress, and state and federal regulators. Our Advisory Panel members include former DHS Secretary Tom Ridge, former CIA and NSA Director Gen. Michael Hayden, and former Coast Guard Vice-Admiral John Shkor, as well as top-level experts from the power, financial and security industries, academia, and former state and federal energy regulators.

Protect Our Power has become an influential, aggressive voice driving state and federal agencies and the U.S. Congress to develop more effective policies to substantially improve our ability to repel attacks on the electric grid and make our nation and economy more secure. We further believe that America’s business leaders need to take an aggressive role on this issue because they are on the front lines, with their companies and employees among the most vulnerable to grid disruptions.

Protect Our Power works to bring together the many disparate elements that make up the electric grid — the thousands of private, public, and cooperative generators, transmission, distribution and equipment supply companies, and state and federal regulators — to achieve a singular result: Ensuring the continuous delivery of a highly reliable and affordable supply of electricity despite the real and escalating level of cyber and physical attacks and natural disasters.