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With the rise of technologies such as distribution automation and advanced metering, field area networks (FANs) have gained considerable momentum because of their prominent role in grid modernization initiatives. The importance of FANs will only continue to increase as they provide the foundation for future grid applications—from distributed power generation and energy storage to electric vehicle charging to microgrids.

Security among this growing set of distributed assets and sensors is incredibly important, and both operational technology (OT) and information technology (IT) will play key roles in managing secure communications networks. Where do the perspectives of these groups align? Where do they diverge? This paper considers the IT/OT processes and technologies around the security of FANs.