Project Description

Monitoring Interfering and Cyber Attacks to Timing Operations of Satellite Based Infrastructures.

Start Date: 18/03/2020
End Date: 18/12/2020

MonICATO focuses on protections against intentional interfering attacks carried out to fool time synchronization of GNSS-based power grids. Power grids depend more and more on satellite-derived time and use signals from Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) to be more efficient. A power grid can be considered as a single, complex, interconnected, and interdependent network, where what happens in one part affects the operations elsewhere. In order to control power generation and loads, and take timely actions, it is necessary to have synchronous measurements from the grid nodes, which requires very accurate time sources. However, time sources like external clocks, Network Time Protocol and Precise Time Protocol experience clock drifts over time and are prone to desynchronization attacks. Therefore, GNSS signals are currently in use for referencing measurements to an absolute time scale, allowing for a better accuracy of the power state estimate. Unfortunately, GNSS receivers are vulnerable to interference and this poses a threat for power grids. Intentional interference might cause major disruption to power supplies, unless manufacturers of GNSS devices act to improve their resilience. Starting from this problem, MonICATO proposes to investigate the feasibility of protections based on the use of the Galileo authenticated signals, i.e. the Open Service Navigation Message Authentication (OSNMA), and of cryptographic features enabled by electronic identity, to enhance the end-to-end security of the grid networks.