GNSS Firewall Software to Strengthen Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) Protection

Critical infrastructure systems including power utilities, financial services, mobile networks and transportation rely on Global Positioning System (GPS)-delivered timing to ensure ongoing operations. Microchip Technology Inc. (Nasdaq: MCHP) today announced the release of a major software update for its BlueSky™ GNSS Firewall product, providing a higher level of resiliency against GPS vulnerabilities for systems dependent on GPS signal reception.

Microchip's BlueSky GNSS Firewall Software Release 2.0 performs real-time analysis to detect jamming and spoofing for protecting reception of the GPS signal and hardening response and recovery to avoid signal disruption. BlueSky GNSS Firewall Software Release 2.0 includes charting and advanced threshold settings of Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) observables such as satellites-in-view, carrier-to-noise, position dispersion, phase time deviation and radio frequency (RF) power level to simplify system turn-up and deployment.

BlueSky GNSS Firewall Software Release 2.0 includes improvements developed by Microchip as a result of participation in an industry live-sky testing event hosted by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate and open to all providers. Microchip's participation in the DHS-hosted GPS Testing for Critical Infrastructure (GET-CI) events, with scenarios including spoofed signals, has helped the company to identify new solutions to prevent signal disruptions. As a result of 2019 live-sky testing and other input, Microchip developed the Blue Sky GNSS Firewall Software Release 2.0 to address operators' evolving requirements.

National Grid Welcomed to European CNI Forum

The European Network for Cyber Security (ENCS) has welcomed National Grid as its first UK member, saying the UK’s transmission system operator (TSO) is among Europe’s “most sophisticated” in terms of cybersecurity posture, and its membership will boost knowledge sharing.

The ENCS is a member-led organisation that works to boost the security of EU energy grids and infrastructure in the face of hyperactive probing by bad actors, and, arguably, distinctly half-baked regulation that fails to penalise manufacturers for insecure components.

Among other efforts, ENCS has baked security requirement guidance into procurement cycles across its membership base and developed testing capabilities to risk-assess things like smart metres; this has now expanded to other areas of the grid, like distribution automation and other tools.

Paul Lee, an engineering manager for cyber and control systems at National Grid said in a statement shared by ENCS: “We have robust cybersecurity measures in place across all our operational infrastructure and IT to protect against cyber threats, but our membership will help us to benefit from ENCS knowledge base as we share information with other members, contributing to increased protection across all critical infrastructure”.

ENCS’s MD Nijk said, “Grid infrastructure has evolved with dramatic speed. Partnering with domain operators to build an expert pool is vital to our members need to be fast and effective [in building up their security] instead of waiting for regulations”.

“National Grid already ranks among the most sophisticated TSOs in terms of cyber security, and by joining ENCS, it demonstrates its commitment to that improving even further” he said in a canned statement.

[Source: Computer Business Review]