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GlobalSign Report Explains Why the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Investigated Electric Industry Security Standards

Allegations That Certificate Authorities Violated Security Standards Proven Unfounded

BOSTON, MA -- (Marketwire) -- 11/08/12 -- GlobalSign (www.globalsign.com), one of the leading providers of SSL Digital Certificates worldwide, today published its Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) Investigation Analysis Report. The report explains why FERC conducted a recent investigation into North American Energy Standards Board (NAESB) Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) cyber security standards, which are designed to reduce risk within the Wholesale Energy Quadrant, and also provides a summary of FERC's findings.

In July, at the request of Senators Joe Lieberman, I-Conn., and Susan Collins, R-Maine, FERC began an investigation to determine whether or not allegations were true that Certificate Authorities (CAs) were placing the Electric Sector in jeopardy by providing the wholesale energy industry with SSL Digital Certificates that did not comply with NAESB PKI standards.

In August, FERC concluded that no CAs had issued any digital certificates that violated standards or regulations. FERC further said that assertions the Electric Sector was in jeopardy due to alleged violations were also unfounded. FERC stated: NAESB standards are aimed at facilitating the security of commercial transactions, and are separate from the obligation of affected utilities under section 215 of the Federal Power Act (FPA) to take steps to ensure the cybersecurity of the bulk-power system.

"There is significant misunderstanding when it comes to the electric grid's strengths and vulnerabilities and how it is protected against cyberthreats -- misunderstanding that causes fear, uncertainty and doubt, as well a misallocation of scarce security resources," said Lila Kee, chief product and marketing officer at GlobalSign and board member of the North American Energy Standards Board (NAESB) Wholesale Electric Quadrant end-users segment. "FERC did an excellent job of debunking the false allegations and revealing the truth. We are making our analysis freely available to any organization or individual who needs to understand the differences between commercial power systems and bulk-power systems, and related security risks."

In addition to summarizing the FERC investigation findings, the GlobalSign FERC Investigation Analysis Report provides background on different sectors of the electric industry and identifies the key government agencies that regulate electric power providers. The report also includes:

  • An executive summary of the situation leading to the investigation and the report's conclusions
  • Definitions of PKI and SSL Digital Certificates
  • An explanation of the role CAs play in the electric sector
  • A comprehensive Q&A that provides related facts and background information

To access the GlobalSign FERC Investigation Analysis Report visit:
https://www.globalsign.com/resources/globalsign-ferc-analysis-report.pdf

To access the complete FERC investigation report visit: http://www.ferc.gov/EventCalendar/Files/20120827175825-EL12-86-000.pdf

About GMO GlobalSign

GlobalSign has been a trust service provider since 1996. Its focus has been, and always will be, on providing convenient and highly productive PKI solutions for organizations of all sizes. Its core Digital Certificate solutions allow its thousands of authenticated customers to conduct SSL secured transactions, data transfer, distribution of tamper-proof code, and protection of online identities for secure email and access control. Vision and commitment to innovation led to GlobalSign being recognized by Frost & Sullivan for the 2011 Product Line Strategy Award. The company has local offices in the US, Europe and throughout Asia. For the latest news on GlobalSign visit www.globalsign.com or follow GlobalSign on Twitter (@globalsign).

GMO Internet Group

GMO Internet Group is one of the most comprehensive providers of industry-leading Internet services worldwide. As well as domain registration, web hosting, ecommerce, and payment processing businesses that each hold the top share in their respective markets in Japan, services operated by the group include Internet advertising, search engine marketing and research. Global online security brand GlobalSign and major Japanese online securities brokerage, GMO CLICK Securities are also group members. In 2011 a new Social Media & Smartphone Platform segment was established bringing together group initiatives in social apps development, flash marketing and Android apps distribution. GMO Internet, Inc. (TSE: 9449) is headquartered in Tokyo, Japan. Please visit www.gmo.jp/en for more information.

Media Contact:
Joe Franscella
Trainer Communications
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