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Andy Gotlieb's picture
Editor of a specialty publication, former public relations practitioner, Freelancer

I hold 34 years of experience in communications, mostly in journalism, with a decade in public relations, too.  The first 17 years were spent in print journalism, where I covered, at various...

  • Member since 2016
  • 1,041 items added with 540,303 views
  • Dec 27, 2022

These kinds of stories are alarming to the general public because they don't understand the potential ramifications. Your job as a utility is to soothe those worries -- whether you've been impacted or not. Media releases about the steps your utility is taking to thwart hackers can be useful tools.

Mark Wilkinson's picture
Mark Wilkinson on Jan 9, 2023

Can't agree more with Andy about this topic.  I've done a tour in cybersecurity and it's a scary world, especially for the uninitiated.  It's no wonder it's the topic that keeps utility COOs and CISOs up at night.  If experts get nervous then our customers certainly should be, and news about hacks at a utility lead to apprehension and misunderstanding among customers.  

However, utilities can take advantage of these events to get preempt customer concerns.  If your utility wasn't a victim of a hack, don't rest on your laurels or keep quiet and wait for the news to die down.  Take the moment to let your customers know about the event anyway and what measures you've taken to protect their data.  It's the perfect opportunity to email customers with advice on how to protect themselves and their personal data, and demonstrate that their utility understands their needs.  

And, it probably also helps to have a package ready to inform customers in case you are the victim of a security event.  You can never be too careful, especially with your customers' data.

Andy Gotlieb's picture
Thank Andy for the Post!
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