AGA Members Enhance Industry Security by Adopting TSA Guidelines and NIST Framework
Washington, DC – Natural gas utilities are actively engaged in voluntary actions to help enhance the security of the nation’s 2.5 million miles of natural gas pipelines, which span all 50 states with diverse geographic and operating conditions. The American Gas Association (AGA) and its members have developed and adopted the AGA Commitment to Cyber and Physical Security, demonstrating their dedication to ensuring that natural gas pipeline infrastructure remains resilient to growing and dynamic cyber and physical security threats.
Voluntary actions adopted by AGA members include implementation of the TSA Pipeline Security Guidelines (Guidelines) and the application of the National Institute of Standards and Technology Framework for Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity (Framework).
“At AGA, security awareness is part of our culture and daily practice,” said Christina Sames, vice president of Engineering and Operations at AGA. “Through public/private partnerships with Federal, State, and local governments, we are able to remain vigilant and strengthen our offensive security posture, helping ensure the continued safe and reliable delivery of natural gas to our customers.”
TSA has oversight for security of pipelines, including natural gas distribution and transmission, and as such, has developed the TSA Pipeline Security Guidelines. AGA member gas utilities and transmission companies implement these voluntary guidelines as applicable to their individual environments.
Additionally, AGA members are utilizing a number of available security standards, models, guidelines and information sharing resources such as the Framework, but also the U.S. Department of Energy Cybersecurity Capability Maturity Model, U.S. Department of Homeland Security Industrial Control System Computer Emergency Readiness Team, TSA Pipeline Security Smart Practices Observations, and TSA Intermodal Security Training Exercise Program. Further enhancing our collective information sharing efforts, AGA member utilities and transmission companies will have access to the Downstream Natural Gas Information Sharing and Analysis Center by 2017.
The TSA Pipeline Security Guidelines were developed post 9/11 with the assistance of industry and government members of the Pipeline Sector and Government Coordinating Councils, pipeline trade associations and other interested parties. Their purpose is to provide a security structure for pipeline owners and operators to voluntarily use in developing their security plans and programs. Wide-spread implementation of the Guidelines by the pipeline industry has enhanced critical infrastructure security throughout the country. The Guidelines are currently undergoing review and AGA members are contributing to updating and strengthening various areas in the Guidelines.
For more information, you can access the Commitment to Cyber and Physical Security here.
The American Gas Association, founded in 1918, represents more than 200 local energy companies that deliver clean natural gas throughout the United States. There are more than 72 million residential, commercial and industrial natural gas customers in the U.S., of which 95 percent — just under 69 million customers — receive their gas from AGA members. Today, natural gas meets more than one-fourth of the United States' energy needs.