Xcel Energy is partnering with Financial Services Information Sharing and Analysis Center (FS-ISAC) to create a new threat information sharing community.

The new community will enhance the energy sector’s access to cyber and physical security intelligence.

“Ensuring the integrity of critical infrastructure demands constant vigilance and it is a responsibility we take seriously,” said Ben Fowke, chairman, president and CEO, Xcel Energy. “We’re proud to take the lead in the creation of a new community that will provide additional tools to address potential cyber and physical risks to our business.”

The new electric grid-centered intelligence community is called the Energy Analytic Security Exchange (EASE) and will be coordinated by the FS-ISAC Sector Services team on behalf of energy sector members. For 18 years, FS-ISAC has been a trusted organization that provides cyber and physical risk intelligence to the worldwide financial services industry. FS-ISAC will share its expertise, technology and its access to intelligence partnerships with the new community.

“We’re excited to welcome Xcel Energy as the initial member of the Energy Analytic Security Exchange and look forward to quickly adding more members to this community. Xcel Energy has an impressive understanding of the threats faced by the energy industry and it is committed to protecting itself and its customers. FS-ISAC Sector Services looks forward to helping the EASE sharing community enhance the security and resilience of the sector,” said Cindy Donaldson, COO, FS-ISAC Sector Services.

Utilities have experience sharing security information within their sector. For example, the Electricity ISAC is a highly valuable security resource and it is managed by the North American Electric Reliability Council (NERC). By supplementing its sharing network to include the resources of FS-ISAC Sector Services, the energy sector will have access to additional timely and relevant information, research and analysis, and threat intelligence from other industries and sources.

“We’re always working to provide safe, reliable and cost-effective energy to customers. Having additional security systems at our disposal helps to ensure the reliability of the system and protects customers,” said Fowke.