"Malicious Data Attacks on Power System State Estimation"

Oliver Kosut, Postdoctoral Associate, MIT

November 18th (Friday), 11:00am
Harold Frank Hall (HFH), Rm 4164

Suppose that a malicious adversary enters a power network, seizes several meters, and alters the measurements that are reported to the control center. How can this affect the knowledge at the control center of the system state? If the adversary controls enough meters, it is able to execute an “unobservable” attack, which substantially damages the control center’s state estimate. This attack divides the problem into two regimes: the strong attack regime, in which the adversary can execute the unobservable attack, and the weak attack regime, in which it cannot. We present a graph-theoretic characterization of unobservable attacks, allowing efficient calculation of the smallest set meters necessary to execute the attack. In the weak attack regime, we present a decision theoretic framework that allows us to examine the problem from the perspective of both the control center and the adversary. For the control center, we propose a generalized likelihood ratio detector that outperforms classical bad data detectors. For the adversary, we examine the tradeoff between damaging the state estimate and minimizing the probability of detection.

About Oliver Kosut:

Oliver Kosut is a postdoctoral associate at MIT. He works in the Laboratory for Information and Decision Systems under Alan Willsky. He received his Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering from Cornell University in 2010, with advisor Long Tong. His interests include information theory, security, power systems, and sparse recovery.

Hosted by: Professor Upamanyu Madhow