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Security

History: 

2001

In the wake of September 11th, 2001, the Commission created an internal Security Team headed by the Director of the Safety Division and staffed primarily by industry engineers and technical analysts within the Commission.  Initially, the security team, on behalf of the Commission, reviewed physical security measures for all major New Hampshire utilities. This was accomplished in coordination with the former New Hampshire Department of Safety’s Office of Emergency Management.
The Division also had a major role in the Technical Assistance program to review New Hampshire’s Emergency Operations Plan (EOP) and terrorism annex, as well as department and agency standard operating guidelines.

2002

RSA 21-P:48 named the Chairman to represent the Commission on the Governor’s Advisory Council on Emergency Preparedness.  The Council advises the Governor on issues relating to the state’s ability to respond to both natural and man-made disasters, and the preparation and maintenance of a state disaster plan.  In 2008 this was expanded to include the Director of Safety. 

2005

The PUC Safety Division, on behalf of the Commission, implemented rules for gas utilities that required notifications of security breaches and threats that would impair operations.  It also required written security plans to protect facilities, and actions required to mitigate potential threats.

2006

RSA 21-P:5-created a state Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management within the New Hampshire Department of Safety.  This eliminated the former New Hampshire Department of Safety’s Office of Emergency Management. NH HSEM was authorized with overseeing the state-level planning, preparation, exercise, response to and mitigation of terrorist threats, incidents, natural and human-caused disasters, and wide-scale threats to public safety.  All state agencies are required to cooperate with the agency director for carrying out those duties. 
The PUC Safety Division’s role of monitoring public utilities’ security efforts plays a vital role in helping New Hampshire accomplish its’ mission.  The PUC Safety Division not only inspects and oversees security measures utilized by the utilities, but also acts as a technical resource for NH HSEM. 

2010

The PUC Safety Division’s role expanded within the Commission to include reviewing cyber security measures in addition to physical security measures. 

2013

The PUC Safety Division, on behalf of the Commission, enhanced the rules for gas utilities to develop written security plans to include preventive measures for supervisory control and data acquisition, control centers, critical supply locations and cybersecurity. 

2014

The PUC Safety Division, on behalf of the Commission, implemented rules for electric utilities that required notifications of security breaches and threats that would impair operations.  It also required written risk-based security plans that included threat level assessments, determining critical assets, creating security measures for those assets, response actions, tracking, and awareness training of employees.  These plans included physical security and cybersecurity threats. 

Activities:

  • The PUC’s Safety Division participates on the NH ACEPS Critical Infrastructure and Key Resources Protection subcommittee. 
  • The PUC’s Safety Division participates on the NH ACEPS CyberSecurity Subcommittee. 
  • The PUC’s Safety Division participates on the NARUC Critical Infrastructure Subcommittee (both Staff and Commissioner levels)
  • The Commission has completed preliminary reviews of electric utilities’ physical and cyber security plans.
  • The Commission has initiated state regulatory meetings regarding cybersecurity reviews.
  • The Commission has organized coordinated Cybersecurity Reviews of electric utilities.
  • The Commission has organized multi-state regional reviews of Cybersecurity initiatives of certain electric utilities.
  • The Commission has organized Federal Cybersecurity Reviews of certain New Hampshire electric utilities. 
  • The PUC’s Safety Division has completed physical security reviews of New Hampshire gas utilities.
  • The PUC’s Safety Division conducts physical security reviews of LNG Plants within the state. 
  • The PUC’s Safety Division has completed Control Room inspections of New Hampshire gas utilities.
  • The Safety Division has completed Scada and telemetering reviews of New Hampshire gas utilities.