Even with board support, Horizon Power’s CISO was in for a shock

Horizon Power’s CISO share lessons on what to do when everything is aligned but the users.

Everything seemed like it was going well for Horizon Power, a Western Australian power supplier that had been actively updating its cybersecurity practices to support a major digital transformation project aiming to tap data-driven analytics to reinvent its customer service.

Led by an integrated project team, business units were working together on a digital transformation that had begun as incoming CEO Stephanie Unwin pursued ways to better use data-driven information technology (IT) systems to improve customer choice, and to streamline and secure the operation of its operational technology (OT) assets.

“What was surfacing for Horizon as an organisation is that people wanted the ability to choose different types of energy options, such as solar and storage batteries,” Horizon Power CISO Jeff Campbell said during a recent Rubrik webinar, in which he outlined the transformation of the organisation’s core systems.

“It was a great opportunity to look at cyber and how that would play a part,because now we’re talking about technology underpinning a lot of these new solutions. It was about consolidating the core and using it to enable the foundations of what we needed to do from a cyber and technology perspective,” Campbell said.

As distinct from conventional models that separate power generation, transmission, distribution and retail, Horizon Power is highly vertically integrated—forcing it to manage every aspect of power generation and delivery to 45,000 retail customers, connected by 8356km of transmission and distribution lines spread across 2.3 million square kilometres.

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