Smart Meters Slow Hurricane Recovery Efforts

by K.T. Weaver, SkyVision Solutions

In 2015, I wrote a comprehensive article explaining that customer calls, not smart meters are still the primary source of power outage notification for utilities and that “it is unrealistic and misleading to advertise that a smart meter will identify your home as being without power with notification to the utility of that condition.” [1]  This is particularly true for large-scale outages since individual meters generally depend on other smart meters in the system to act as relays for an outage notification signal to make it all the way back to the utility company.  As the number of meters in the system increases which are without power, fewer and fewer meters remain that can act as relays.

Smart meters can also be much more easily damaged during storm conditions as compared to their analog counterparts.  Such is likely the case in Lakeland, Florida, where restoration efforts are still underway from Hurricane Irma.  Up to 500 smart meters are reported as malfunctioning and indicating that power has been restored to the customer when it has not.  Continue reading

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Smart Meter Cyber Attacks: “A Clear and Present Danger”

by K.T. Weaver, SkyVision Solutions

A new article has been published in the International Journal of Critical Infrastructure Protection entitled, “Security Analysis of an Advanced Metering Infrastructure.”  According to the article [1]:

“Sophisticated cyber attacks on advanced metering infrastructures are a clear and present danger.  The most devastating scenario involves a computer worm that traverses advanced metering infrastructures and permanently disables or ‘bricks’ [2] millions of smart meters in major metropolitan areas.”

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‘Subhourly Smart Meter Data Raises Privacy and Safety Concerns’, According to Paper Referenced by Industry Proponents in Legal Brief

by K.T. Weaver, SkyVision Solutions

I previously wrote an article regarding the case of Naperville Smart Meter Awareness, v. City of Naperville, where an amici curiae brief was filed by smart meter proponents explaining how government searches conducted using smart meters should be considered “reasonable.” [1] [2]

The legal brief [2] filed by the American Public Power Association (APPA), Edison Electric Institute (EEI), and National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) is literally a joke.

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Government “Searches” Conducted Using Smart Meters Considered “Reasonable” by Industry Proponents

by K.T. Weaver, SkyVision Solutions

A shocking court filing by industry and smart meter proponents reveals the degree to which corporate and government interests will go to get these privacy-invading devices on our homes.

In the case of Naperville Smart Meter Awareness, v. City of Naperville, an amici curiae brief was recently filed by the American Public Power Association (APPA), Edison Electric Institute (EEI), and National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA). [1]

In that legal brief [1], smart meter proponents state that:

“A smart meter is not an ‘unreasonable’ search, but is a very reasonable means of advancing significant government interests.”

“The reasonableness of a search under the Fourth Amendment is determined by balancing its intrusion on the individual’s Fourth Amendment interests against its promotion of legitimate government interests.”

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Smart Meters: “A Surveillance-capable Infrastructure”

by K.T. Weaver, SkyVision Solutions 

In a letter dated May 25, 2017, the ACLU of Washington raised “significant concerns about the lack of protections for privacy, as well as lack of transparency, in the implementation of Seattle City Light’s Advanced Metering Infrastructure.” [1] [2]

Although the concerns specifically address the planned smart meter program for Seattle, Washington, many of the identified issues apply to all smart meters being deployed across the nation and the world. Continue reading

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Dr. Samuel Milham: “Smart meters are a public health hazard.”

by K.T. Weaver, SkyVision Solutions

As part of direct testimony [1] filed in an electric utility rate case in Arizona, Samuel Milham, M.D., M.P.H. stated:

“It is my professional opinion that smart meters are a public health hazard.”

Dr. Milham (physician-epidemiologist) is the author of Dirty Electricity as well as over 100 peer-reviewed scientific publications.  Dr. Milham’s assertion is that adverse health effects can be caused by the “electrical pollution (dirty electricity) generated by the smart meter SMPS [switching mode power supply].”

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Deflating the Propaganda Argument on How Smart Meter Opt-Outs Shift Extra Costs to Ratepayers

by K.T. Weaver, SkyVision Solutions 

In order to penalize consumers who do not wish to take on the additional safety and security risks associated with smart meters, utilities typically charge those customers punitive fees.  They justify or rationalize these fees by proclaiming that other customers should not subsidize the few consumers refusing smart meters.

In actuality, those customers refusing smart meter risks are simply requesting a “same level of service” with a traditional analog meter.  Logically, in those circumstances, why should there be any change in how the customer is billed for electric service?

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Secure Your Family from Cyber Threats with an Analog Meter, Says Michigan State Senator

by K.T. Weaver, SkyVision Solutions 

The Michigan House Energy Policy Committee has been conducting hearings on legislation that would restore consumer protections regarding the type of meters that are installed upon their personal property by utility companies.  I provided coverage of these hearings in two previous articles. [1] [2]

In this article I would like to focus on the March 7, 2017, testimony of state Senator Patrick Colbeck, who says:

“One of the ways our citizens can secure their own family from [the] threats to our power grid is to opt out of so-called smart meters and retain analog meters, which have served us well for decades.  Cybersecurity threats today are very real.” [3]

“Against this increased risk, there is little to no consumer benefit to the adoption of smart meters.” [3]

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Expert Testimony on Smart Meters/Grid: “Retain analog systems to the extent possible.”

by K.T. Weaver, SkyVision Solutions

Cynthia Ayers is a national security threat analyst, currently working as an independent consultant within the Mission Control and Cyber Division of the Center for Strategic Leadership, U.S. Army War College.  She is also serving as Deputy to the Executive Director of the Congressionally sponsored Task Force on National and Homeland Security.

On March 7, 2017, Ayers presented testimony before the Michigan House Committee on Energy Policy.  Her testimony included an analysis of how smart meters introduce safety and security threats to the electric grid and to civilization itself.  Continue reading

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CIA Looks to Spy on Private Lives through “Smart” Devices

PRESS STATEMENT: (March 7, 2017) Privacy International Reaction to Vault 7 Leaks

Privacy International Executive Director Dr Gus Hosein said:

“If today’s leaks are authenticated, they demonstrate what we’ve long been warning about government hacking powers — that they can be extremely intrusive, have enormous security implications, and are not sufficiently regulated.  Insufficient security protections in the growing amount of devices connected to the internet or so-called “smart” devices, such as Samsung Smart TVs, only compound the problem, giving governments easier access to our private lives.

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