Security Aspects in Smart Meters: Analysis and Prevention

Sensors (Basel). 2020 Jul 17;20(14):3977. doi: 10.3390/s20143977.


Smart meters are of the basic elements in the so-called Smart Grid. These devices, connected to the Internet, keep bidirectional communication with other devices in the Smart Grid structure to allow remote readings and maintenance. As any other device connected to a network, smart meters become vulnerable to attacks with different purposes, like stealing data or altering readings. Nowadays, it is becoming more and more popular to buy and plug-and-play smart meters, additionally to those installed by the energy providers, to directly monitor the energy consumption at home. This option inherently entails security risks that are under the responsibility of householders. In this paper, we focus on an open solution based on Smartpi 2.0 devices with two purposes. On the one hand, we propose a network configuration and different data flows to exchange data (energy readings) in the home. These flows are designed to support collaborative among the devices in order to prevent external attacks and attempts of corrupting the data. On the other hand, we check the vulnerability by performing two kind of attacks (denial of service and stealing and changing data by using a malware). We conclude that, as expected, these devices are vulnerable to these attacks, but we provide mechanisms to detect both of them and to solve, by applying cooperation techniques.

Keywords: denial of service; malware; node-RED; security; smart meters.