Message from SECAS
I hope you had an enjoyable and relaxing Easter break.
From a Technical and Operations perspective, the first quarter of 2018 was filled with preparations for Release 2.0, the SMETS1 Services release, and bedding down the role and activities of the Operations Group that was established at the end of 2017.
Following the March SEC Panel meeting, the Testing Advisory Group (TAG) continued to review and make informed recommendations on the entry and exit criteria (where required) for testing activities in anticipation for the significant Releases to be made in 2018.
TAG has now completed its reviews and made its recommendations on all key Release 2.0 testing phase entry and/or exit criteria. With regards to the SMETS1 Services, TAG is undertaking final activities to make a recommendation on Interface Testing exit criteria, and will continue to review subsequent documentation as required.
In March, the Technical Architecture and Business Architecture Sub Committee (TABASC) was busy overseeing activities to review and update the Technical Architecture Document and the Business Architecture Document in preparation for Release 2.0. These are out for industry consultation until 12th April 2018, so please visit the SEC website for more information.
The Operations Group held a successful Risk Workshop in March, with another to follow this month. This work, in addition to the regular monthly meetings, is achieving the ground work required for the Group to fulfil its remit, particularly as the DCC scales up its Services in response to the increased demand that is anticipated as more SMETS2 Devices are rolled out, and in preparation for SMETS1 Services.
Thank you to everyone taking part in the design, testing and operational aspects of the end to end smart metering arrangements. I look forward to continuing to work with you.
Delivery Manger, Technical and Operations
The SEC Panel held its latest meeting on 9th March 2018. The key topics and decisions discussed can be found in the Final Minutes here.
Key items discussed include:
- The Panel were provided recommendations from the Testing Advisory Group (TAG) in regard to the approval of the Release 2.0 User Interface Testing entry and exit criteria, and the SMETS1 Systems Integration Testing Approach Document and User Testing Services. The Panel agreed to recommend the approval of the entry and exit criteria of both;
- The Panel discussed its role in transitional releases and it was agreed that SECAS and BEIS will work together to identify any materials that may need to be handed over to the Panel and its Sub-Committees following a Release going live; and
- The Panel agreed to submit a response to the BEIS consultation on ‘Changes to the Smart Energy Code to permit DCC to develop and use a Production Proving Capability’.
The next Panel meeting will be on Friday, 13th April 2018.
Security Sub-Committee (SSC)
In addition to reviewing Security Assessments for DCC Users, the SSC discussed the following items:
- The SSC has been liaising with BEIS to discuss the requirements for adding SMETS1 Devices to the Certified Products List. The SSC are discussing the level of assurance needed for a SMETS1 Device to be added to the list, recognising the difficulty of retrospectively adding requirements to Devices that are already on consumer premises.
- SECAS provided the SSC with feedback from the Security Assessment Survey that has been issued to all SEC Parties that have undertaken a Security Assessment to date. The purpose of the survey is to ensure that the assessment process is working efficiently, and use any constructive feedback to improve the process. It was confirmed that all respondents would be contacted individually with updates regarding how their feedback will be actioned.
The SSC meet on the second and fourth Wednesday of every month. Further information about the SSC can be found here.
Technical Architecture and Business Architecture Sub-Committee (TABASC)
The TABASC met on 15th March 2018. The headlines and meeting documentation for the meeting are available here. The main topics of discussion included:
- The draft changes made to the Business Architecture Document (BAD) and Technical Architecture Document (TAD) based on Release 2.0 content. The updated documents were issued to the TABASC, the Technical and Business Expert Community (TBEC) and other interested SEC Parties for review on 15th March 2018, with responses/comments requested by 12th April 2018.
- For further information on how to review and/or respond on the updated BAD, please see the latest news item: Business Architecture Document Industry Review – Release 2.0 and SEC content
- For further information on how to review and/or respond on the updated TAD, please see the latest news item: Technical Architecture Document Industry Review – Release 2.0 and SEC content
- Issuing the Effectiveness Review Questionnaire to SEC Parties and Users in April 2018. This will occur in order to gather initial data and feedback to inform next steps on subsequent re-issue later in the year, once the volumes of SMETS2 metering system installations are anticipated to have increased. The survey will be issued to all SEC Parties, with the aim of getting DCC User views on the experience of live operations to date.
- For further information, please see the latest news item: Advanced Notice that the TABASC Architecture Effectiveness review questionnaire will be issued in April 2018
The next TABASC meeting will take place on the 19th April 2018.
Testing Advisory Group (TAG)
The TAG met on 28th March 2018 to primarily discuss:
- Release 2.0 User Integration Testing Real Meter Provision and Support Criteria to inform a recommendation to the Panel;
- SMETS1 Service User and Device Journey, including the design and how to test the design specifically in relation to device selection;
- SMETS1 User Testing Services Approach Document and the SMETS1 Interface Testing criteria to inform a recommendation to the Panel; and
- Initial details on the scope and activities for the first enduring DCC Systems impact release that will take place in 2019.
Once the meeting minutes are finalised, they will be available here. The next TAG meeting will be on 25th April 2018.
Smart Metering Key Infrastructure (SMKI) Policy Management Authority (PMA) Update
The 44th SMKI PMA meeting took place on Tuesday, 20th March 2018. The minutes from the meeting can be found here and the following topics were discussed:
- T-Scheme Report Publication: The SMKI PMA reviewed the T-Scheme report and determined the assurance status to be set as approved with caveats. The report has been published to SEC Parties, the Authority and BEIS.
- Key Custodians Update: The DCC informed the SMKI PMA that a call for nominations for new Key Custodians was needed. The SMKI PMA agreed and approved that the DCC would issue a call for nominations.
- SRT Production Upgrade March 2018: The March SEC Panel placed an action on the DCC to provide a formal report to the SMKI PMA. The DCC presented their proposals to the SMKI PMA in regard to the production deployment of Part 4 SRT functionality. The full report will be provided prior to the next SMKI PMA meeting.
The next SMKI PMA meeting will take place on Tuesday, 17th April 2018.
Operations Group (Ops Group)
The Operations Group met on 27th March 2018. In addition to reviewing a number of regular DCC reports, the following items were discussed:
- The Ops Group discussed proposals from the DCC of an agile approach to making changes to the SSI Specification (SEC Appendix AH);
- The Ops Group discussed issues of Data Quality and Data Integrity for smart data items such as RDP data and items on the DCC Inventory; and
- The Ops Group reviewed the Major Incident Review Report from the DCC, noting lessons learned from the CSPN incident in February 2018.
Once the minutes are finalised, they will be available here. The next OPSG meeting will be held 24th April 2018.
New SEC Modification Proposals
SECAS presented the Initial Modification Report (IMR) for SECMP0046 to the Panel at their March 2018 meeting.
The Panel agreed for SECMP0046 to proceed into the Refinement Process.
Modifications Update Following March Panel Meeting
At its March 2018 meeting, the Panel considered the following two Draft Modification Reports (DMRs):
- SECMP0002’Add New Command to Reset Debt Registers’; and
- SECMP0029‘Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Testing Amendments’.
The Panel determined that both SECMP0002 and SECMP0029 should be progressed to Modification Report Consultation (MRC). Additionally, as the material impact originally envisioned under the initially proposed solution is no longer relevant, the Panel agreed that SECMP0029 should now proceed as a Path 3 ‘Self Governance’ Modification Proposal.
Following the Panel’s decision, SECAS issued SECMP0002 and SECMP0029 for MRC, with responses due by 5pm, Thursday 5th April 2018. If you wish to register an opinion on the outcome of these modifications, please send your responses to SEC.Change@gemserv.com. Further information on these consultations can be found on the SECMP0002 and SECMP0029 pages of our website.
Modification Timetable Extensions
At its March 2018 meeting, SECAS requested:
- a one-month extension to SECMP0018 ‘Standard Electricity Distributor Configuration Settings’; and
- a two-month extension to SECMP0044 ‘User Security Assessment of a Shared Resource’.
The Panel approved the revised Modification Proposal timetables. The timetables for all active Modification Proposals can be found in the SEC Modification Register at the top of the Modifications page of the SEC Website.
Change Board Vote
At its meeting on 22nd March 2018, the SEC Change Board unanimously voted on one Path 3 ‘Self Governance’ Modification Proposal and decided to:
- Approve SECMP0034 ‘Updates to SEC Appendix B – Organisation ARL expiration date to be aligned to DCCKI ARL’.
SEC Parties now have 10 working days to appeal the Change Board’s decision. This referral period will close on 9th April 2018. If no referrals are made, SECMP0034 will be implemented on 1st November 2018.
The Change Board also voted on the following Path 2 ‘Authority Determined’ Modification Proposal and unanimously recommended that:
- The SECMP0045 ‘Incorporation of the requirements of the General Data Protection Regulations’ alternative solution be approved.
SECAS issued the Final Modification Report (FMR) to BEIS for Authority Determination on 23rd March 2018.
Modifications Question Hour
The next Modifications’ Question Hour will be held at 11 am on Tuesday 3rd April 2018. Further information, including the relevant teleconference details, can be found here.
Government Response to Non-Domestic Smart Metering Policy Proposals
In August 2017, BEIS published a consultation that included their minded-to position that energy Suppliers to Non-Domestic premises would be required to become DCC Users by 31st August 2018. On 27th March 2018 BEIS published a consultation response that confirmed this position.
BEIS also concluded on conditions for exemptions from this mandate. Non-Domestic only energy suppliers will qualify for the exemption if only advanced meters have been installed or are eligible to be installed as described in paragraphs 39.5 of the Electricity Supply Licence or paragraph 33.4 of the Gas Supply Licence. Energy suppliers will be able to offer a choice between advanced meters and smart meters to all SME and large business energy consumers. When supplying microbusinesses, the energy supplier will still have to take all reasonable steps to install a SMETS compliant smart metering system.
For clarity, BEIS decided against introducing an exemption based on the number of designated premises a supplier is responsible for.
Those exempted energy suppliers must become DCC Users if they intend to either install a SMETS2 meter or to operate a SMETS2 meter that churns to them.
The full conclusion can be read here.
- Provision of Communications Hubs and Production Proving Capability
- SEC Changes to enable the Provision of a SMETS1 Service by the DCC
SEC Parties and Accessions
No new Parties acceded to the SEC in March 2018. The table below shows the current status of SEC Parties. SEC Party Details can be accessed on the SEC Website.
|Current SEC Parties||286|
|Accession of new Parties to the SEC since last Newsletter||0|
|Parties withdrawing from the SEC||0|
|Expulsion of Parties from the SEC||0|
|Changes to the SEC Panel Member Employment Status||0|
Upcoming SEC Calendar Dates
The key dates for April 2018 for SECAS , the SEC Panel and Sub-Committee meetings are below. More information on these meetings is available via the SEC Website Meeting Calendar.
|Date (2018)||Meetings and Events|
|4th April||Introduction to the SEC|
|11th April||SSC Meeting 52|
|13th April||SEC Panel Meeting 55|
|13th April||SECCo Board Meeting 55|
|17th April||SMKI PMA Meeting 45|
|19th April||TABASC Meeting 29|
|24th April||Operations Group 07|
|25th April||SSC Meeting 53|
|25th April||TAG Meeting 42|