Skip to content

Exploring cyber attacks and risks associated with the UK Energy Grid

Date: 3 April 2019 09:30 - 3 April 2019 16:00

Digital Catapult will be running a one day workshop in London on 3 April 2019 to introduce a new perspective on cyber risk in complex ecosystems. We will be showing how our approach can be applied to explore emergent threats to the UK Energy Grid as it undergoes an internet of things driven smart transformation.

With an increasingly complex and interconnected world we need to reconsider our perception of risk as it applies to cyber threats. Traditional risk models rely heavily on probabilistic approaches, which demand stable distributions and almost complete knowledge of possible states. New advances in digital technologies, combined huge data, rapidly evolving automated algorithms and the prospect of a generational shift in network speed and capacity pose serious challenges to traditional risk modelling.

Digital Catapult, as part of the EU Horizon 2020 research project Hermeneut, has proposed a new approach – the Benefit Harm Index (BHI). This index integrates ideas from economics and complexity science into a new approach to understand dynamic and emergent threats.

During this workshop we will use a model of the cyber ecosystem representing the evolving UK smart energy grid to explore how dynamic and emergent threats can generate systemic risk. In this context the potential growth rates for both benefits and harm associated with the current IoT driven smart transformation of the UK Energy Grid will be explored.

Who should attend?

This event is tailored for cyber security companies, IoT manufacturers, value added services companies and cyber insurance companies, as well as those interested in systems modelling.

Why you should attend

Attending this workshop provides an opportunity to participate in leading edge discussions to better understand uncertainty and risk. At the workshop a hypothetical multi-vector cyber attack will be shown. It will be initiated by a nation state threat source on the UK Smart Energy Grid as an example. Using the cyber ecosystem model of the UK Smart Energy Grid there will be a number of interactive team sessions to show how tools such as the implications wheel can be used to identify emergent threat scenarios through interdisciplinary and inter-institutional approaches. The workshop will conclude with a session to gather feedback and to explore the potential for taking this new approach to cyber risk forward in the context of the energy sector.


  • 09.30 – 10.00 Introductions and objectives of the day
  • 10.00 – 10.45 Presentation of the BHI perspective on cyber risk, Digital Catapult white paper on the IoT evolution of the UK Energy Grid
  • 10.45 – 11.00 Break
  • 11.00 – 11.15 A proposed approach on putting measures on the BHI
  • 11.15 – 12.00 Setting context for the IoT evolution of the UK Energy Grid
  • 12.00 – 13.00 Lunch
  • 13.00 – 14.30 Putting the BHI into practice – identifying scenarios through interdisciplinary and inter-institutional approaches
  • 14.30 – 15.00 Break
  • 15.00 – 16.00 How to take the BHI forward in the IoT evolution of the UK Energy?

Next steps

Register for the event here.