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Smart Meters vulnerable to cyber attacks?

March 22, 2013

I have long been opposed to the $54 million that the Glendale City Council has spent on the Smart Meter program. 

The city council approved the expansion of the Glendale Water & Power computing system on the recommendation of the former GWP manager. The cost approved to develop the entire system approved was in the neighborhood of $70 million, including the $17-million-cost of the new meters provided by the federal government. I contended that the city council did not have the expertise to understand the development costs for the software upgrades required to complete the entire Smart Meter System. 

There are undoubtedly more costs on the horizon. California utility officials have warned all the state's utilities about the increasing vulnerability to cyber attacks that could leave millions of residents without electricity and water. Most importantly, the California Utilities Agency warned that utilities were becoming vulnerable to cyber attacks as their networks add Smart Meters and other computerized gear to their systems.

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Undoubtedly, this will eventually exacerbate the already out-of-control utility-rate increases being approved by the city council. The two incumbents running for re-election have continued to approve the Smart Meter program. This city council has operated without any financial and technical plans for years, including the two incumbents seeking re-election.

Albert Hofmann
Glendale

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