With the constant advancements in technology there is an equal amount of cyber threats coming for your company’s most vital asset. A way to prevent the worst from happening is by following The North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) standards. Those without any guidelines on how to improve company critical infrastructure can fall at the hand of those threats.
NERC provides the most efficient cyber security standards to keep your company safe from any and every threat. It is up to you to learn all you can and train yourself to actively use them. With NERC critical infrastructure training you can be a real asset to your team.
What Does NERC CIP Stand For?
The North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) critical infrastructure protection (CIP) is a plan with a long list of requirements made for the security of assets involved in the operation of bulk electric systems (BES) in America, Canada, and parts of Mexico.
These standards were created to lower the risk of cybersecurity attacks made on your systems. Many companies require compliance with these standards since it can be harmful to leave a system without any protective measures.
NERC CIP Standards Overview
Here is a small look into the kind of standards that the NERC suggest you put in place. These standards directly protect Bulk Power Systems, Critical Assets, Cyber Assets that support Critical Assets, as well as Critical Cyber Security Assets. Though the main focus of NERC’s standards are Cybersecurity Assets.
It can be normal to think that once a standard is published it never changes. Though technology constantly reminds you of the changes that are made almost daily. These standards are updated by the NERC.
They prioritize having the best practices and advances put into place. The current version of NERC CIP has 14 standards, and each goes into great depth to provide the best practices for your security system.
The standards go as follows:
- Personnel & Training
- Electronic Security Perimeters
- Physical Security Perimeters
- Systems Security Management
- Incident Response/Response Planning
- Recovery Plans
- Configuration Change Management and Vulnerability
- Information Protection
- Supply Chain Risk Management Physical Security
- Physical Security
What is NERC CIP Training?
It can be difficult to know where to begin when learning about NERC CIP training. Luckily there are plenty of resources available to learn about all the required standards and procedures. Though some may want the help of a professional when it comes to learning about CIP standards.
That is where NERC CIP compliance training comes in. By following the standards, you can bring benefits to your company, such as environmental awareness and improved preparedness for any cyber security breaches.
A way to ensure that you know CIP standards like the back of your hand is by going through certification. Certification is a perfect way to be aware of the CIP standards that are currently in place and to know when these standards are updated.
Having employees work with cyber security systems without the knowledge of proper standards that need to be put in place can be harmful to your company and its assets.
Types of employees or people who should be receiving NERC CIP Training are:
- Incident response
- Project managers
- CIP auditors
- Field and security operations
- IT cybersecurity
- EMS cybersecurity
- And any other members of staff that are involved in conserved cyber security standards in substations and so on
There are bootcamps, training seminars, online videos and so on all about NERC CIP training. If your company does not have the training already in place it may be useful to propose that idea to your manager. Cybersecurity training is never a waste.
How to get NERC CIP certified?
There are so many resources and options when it comes to being certified. Though, NERC provides a page where you can see the process for being certified as well as the names of the exams you’ll take.
The name of this certification is called the System Operator Certification & Maintenance Program. Its purpose is to help prepare operators and others interested in becoming NERC certified, by offering several courses and activities.
At the end of these activities and courses they test your knowledge by having you complete four exams. These four exams are the:
- Reliability examination
- Balancing, Interchange and Transmission examination
- Transmission examination
- Balancing examination
Once you successfully pass these exams you receive your certification. The onus is then on you to have it renewed every three years since possible updates can be made during that time.
If you want to learn more about this certification in great detail visit this link.
The Importance of NERC CIP Training
Some may wonder why it’s so important to receive NERC CIP training, and the answer is simple. Knowing the standards keeps your company safe from cyber security threats. The NERC also takes compliance very seriously.
You may receive a surprise audit, and if your company does not have those standards in place, you can receive a fine. Not only should avoiding a fine from the NERC be a motivator, but the protection and stability of your company should be as well.
NERC compliance ensures the safety and success of companies. There can be no harm done by following their standards. They were created to benefit cyber security systems everywhere.
Once you understand the NERC CIP standards, it will be easier to implement them into your systems and continue to be compliant.
If you wish to know some of the more important requirements for CIP compliance, take a look at the list below:
- Personnel Training
- Recovery planning
- Policy, process and procedure planning
- Development, documentation and evidence reporting
- Mock audits
- Patch management
- Compliance audits and assessments
- Incident reporting of cyber security events
- Quick response planning
This list may seem a bit long and intimidating but there is comfort knowing you can use this list as a tool to create strong and confident operating systems. By complying with these standards, you’ll be at peace knowing you have put your all into creating your security system.
Need A Consult?
If you desire to know more about NERC CIP compliance and the proper steps to make towards becoming more knowledgeable about the subject you can contact RSI Security for a consultation.