The main goal of North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) is to ensure that bulk electric system in North America is adequate, reliable and secure. This program ensures that the bulk power system is well designed, planned, built and operated in a way that takes into account modern threats. Some of these modern threats include attacks by cyber criminals. The NERC compliance program was created to prevent such attacks thus ensuring maximum security to the bulk electric power. Every bulk power system operator or owner must comply with the NERC standards.
The NERC’s compliance program effort consists of the following 3 main activities:
This is the process used to investigate, assess, audit and evaluate so as to determine compliance with NERC standards.
This is the process through which NERC issues its sanctions. It is also through this process that NERC ensures reduction of confirmed violations of its Reliability Standards. Through these efforts, NERC is also able to deter new violations. Those found violating the standards are supposed to hand over a mitigation plan to NERC for approval. Once approved, they must execute this plan.
Registration and certification
This involves identification and registration of bulk electric power owners, users and operators. After registration, the NERC certifies these bulk power owners, users and operators. They are certified as having the required facilities, knowledge, programs and personnel