Secretary of State Variations - SEC

Secretary of State Variations

The Secretary of State (SoS) may direct variations to the SEC and this page sets out a consolidated view of such variations.

These variations are not subject to the SEC Section D: Modification Process.

The table below lists the SoS directed variations to the SEC, raised to date.

ProvisionDescriptionDate of NoticeLink
SEC Section XSecretary of State direction to extend the sunset provisions, in Section X2.4(b) and Section X2.6(a), until September 2015 to allow the DCC to continue to use interim data.13th February 2014 SoS Notice 13 February 14
SEC Section LDCC Notice setting out the Secretary of State agreement of amendment to the submission date of the draft SMKI related Subsidiary Documents.

The date of submitting the following documents was moved from 1st September 2014 to 1st October 2014:

  • SMKI Interface Design Specification (L4.6(b))

  • SMKI Code of Connection (L4.6(b))

  • SMKI Repository Interface Design Specification (L6.6(b))

  • SMKI Repository Code of Connection (L6.6(b))

The date of submitting the following documents was moved from 1st September 2014 to 2nd January 2015:

  • SMKI Registration Authority Policies and Procedures (L9.5(d))

  • SMKI Recovery Procedure (L10.4(b))

The Secretary of State agreed the change to the delivery dates on 22nd August 2014, with the DCC then giving notice on 2nd September 2014.
2nd September 2014 DCC Notice 02 September
SEC Section TDCC Notice setting out the Secretary of State agreement of amendment to the submission date of the draft Testing related documents.

The Secretary of State has directed the calendar date by which the following document must be submitted to the Secretary of State shall be no later than 1st December 2014:

  • SMKI and Repository Test Scenarios Document (T6.5(d))

The Secretary of State has directed the calendar dates by which the following documents are is to be published on the DCC website shall be no later than 2nd February 2015:

  • SRT Approach Document (T5.11)

  • Interface Testing Approach Document (T3.13)

The Secretary of State agreed the change to the delivery dates on 31st October 2014, with the DCC then giving notice on 4th November 2014.
4th November 2014 DCC Notice 4 November 14
SEC Section HSoS issued a direction on 24th April 2015 to activate Section H14.31 from that date to support the provision of a limited form of testing (informal testing).

In addition, Sections H14.2(a), H14.5, H14.6, H14.7, H14.11 and H14.32 shall also be in effect from the same date for the purposes of the testing services provided under the varied Section H14.31.

The provisions in Section H14.31 have been varied (under the provisions with Section X3.6 (Provisions to be Effective Subject to variations) in the following matter:

  • Sections H14.31(a) and (b) shall apply on the basis that the DCC is obliged to take reasonable steps to provide the Services described in those sections;

  • Section H14.31(c) and the paragraph following it shall not apply;

  • References to the following shall be interpreted as prototypes or simulations of these things as the DCC may determine from time to time:

    • Communication Hubs;

    • Devices;

    • DCC User Interface;

    • DCC Systems;

    • SM WAN; and

    • User Systems;

  • The reference to the Self-Service Interface shall be ignored;

  • The functionality of the prototypes or simulations provided by the DCC shall be limited to the functionality that the DCC reasonably determines;

  • The DCC and Testing Participants undertaking Device and User System testing must comply with such supplemental obligations as the DCC may notify to Testing Participants from time to time (provided that such obligations are not inconsistent with the provisions of the Code that are in effect at that time; and

  • The DCC is not obliged to provide any additional testing support in understanding the DCC Total System or the results of the Device and User System Tests.

The Secretary of State direction letter dated 14 th April 2016 cancels the above variation to Section H14.31, the variation ceases to apply once end-to-end testing commences.
24th April 2015 SoS Notice 24 April 15
SEC Section F, Section H and Section XSoS issued a direction on 30 th  April 2015, the Secretary of State (SoS) issued a direction to activate and vary the provisions in Section F5 (Communications Hub Forecasts & Orders).

The SoS direction has designated that Section F5 as varied by Section X3.3, is in effect from 30th April 2015.

This activation date is to ensure Parties can take delivery of Communication Hubs on a revised Initial Delivery Date of 1st March 2016.

For a Party to be able to take delivery of Communications Hubs on 1st March 2016, the initial forecast must be submitted in May 2015, no later than the fifth working day prior to the last working day of the month.

The direction also varies the transitional arrangements, in Sections X3.3(c(i), (ii) and (iii), for submitting Communications Hub forecasts and orders. The transitional provisions will remain in place until 30 th September 2015 (or such later date as the SoS may direct).

The direction varies the Section F5.6 (Parties: Duty to Submit Communications Hub Forecasts) provisions on how forecasts are deemed where a Party does not submit a forecast. Where a Party does not submit a forecast in May 2015, the Party shall be deemed to have submitted a forecast of zero for each of the months which should have been covered by that forecast.

The SoS Direction also has the effect that from 1st August 2015 Section H8.16(f) (Self Service Interface) will take effect, at which point the DCC will be required to provide extensive SM WAN coverage information.

The direction also varies the transitional requirements in Section X3.3(c)(iv) on the DCC around the provision of information to Parties on SM WAN coverage. The direction means that the transitional requirements will remain in place until 31st July 2015.

In addition the direction has varied (pursuant to Section X3.6) that the information referred to in Section H6.16(f) that the DCC must provide, will be made available to all other Parties (not just the classes of party referred to in Section H8.16(f) and that the information will be made available via a readily available means (not via the Self-Service Interface).
30th April 2015 SoS Notice 30 April 15
SEC Section NSoS issued a direction on 30 th  April 2015 to the Data and Communications Company (DCC) for the purpose of Section N3.2 (Overview of Initial Enrolment), in respect of the Initial Enrolment Project Feasibility Report (IEPFR).

The Secretary of State direction has directed the DCC to:

  1. Provide with reasonable notice to Supplier Parties, appropriate opportunities as defined by the DCC, for each Supplier Party to notify the DCC if they wish to include or exclude any additional Energy Meters from the scope of the IEPFR. This must be done prior to the DCC consulting on the draft IEPFR in accordance with Section N4.5; and

  2. Include or exclude (as applicable) from the scope of the IEPFR those Energy Meters notified in accordance with the requirements above (and, where no such notification is received from a Supplier Party, the DCC shall assume that previously notified Energy Meters remain in scope of the IEPFR).

In short the direction means that Section N4.7, N4.8 and N4.9 shall cease to apply, with the remaining provisions in Section N4 left unchanged.
30th April 2015 SoS Notice 30 April 15
SEC Section X Secretary of State direction to further extend the sunset provisions, in Section X2.4(b) and Section X2.5(a), until September 2016 to allow the DCC to continue to use interim data.11th August 2015 SoS Notice 11 August 15
SEC Section X and Section FIn addition to designating the CH Handover Support Materials and making other minor related changes to the SEC, the SoS direction letter issued on the 14th September 2015 included the following supplementary provisions:

  • Parties currently submit Communications Hub Forecasts pursuant to Sections X3.3(c)(ii) and (iii) of the SEC, for which transitional arrangements are due to end on 30 th September 2015. From 1st October 2015, Parties will have the ability to submit Communications Hub Forecasts via the Order Management System comprising part of the CH Ordering System (as further described in the CHHSM). We believe that Parties would find it useful to have a period within which both means of forecast submission are available. The transitional arrangements in Sections X3.3(c)(ii) and (iii) of the SEC shall therefore also continue to apply until 1st April 2016, noting that a Party shall submit each Communications Hub Forecast for any particular 24-month period only once and, in the event that a Party should submit in error that forecast using both the transitional arrangements and the Order Management System, only the first of the forecasts submitted shall apply.

  • The CHHSM references the Incident Management Policy and CH Installation and Maintenance Support Materials neither of which have been incorporated into the SEC, and any references as such should be read as references to the draft versions included in baselined documents published on the DCC website.

  • The CHHSM contains a reference to Section F6.17 (Non-Standard Delivery Options) of the SEC. The SEC has not yet been modified to include Section F6.17.and so the reference is to be read as a reference to the proposed Section F6.17 published for consultation on 16 July 2015.

  • The CHHSM contains references to the Self-Service Interface. The DCC is not yet obliged under the SEC to make the Self-Service Interface available. Until its inclusion the provisions concerning the Self-Service Interface in the CHHSM shall not apply.
14th September 2015 SoS Notice 14 September 15
SEC Section XSecretary of State direction, designating the Enduring Testing Approach Document as a SEC Subsidiary Document.28th September 2015 SoS Notice 28 September 15
SEC Section L and Section XSecretary of State direction, designating the SMKI and Repository Testing Document as a SEC Subsidiary Document and activating the Provisions in SEC Section L7, SMKI and Repository Entry Process Tests.21st October 2015  SoS Notice 21 October 15
SEC Appendix L - SMKI Recovery Procedure Secretary of State direction, designating the SMKI Registration Authority Policies and Procedures (SMKI RAPP) and the SMKI Recovery Procedure. The direction letter also varied the SMKI Recovery Procedure so that from the of 9th February 2016:

  • All of its provisions other than Sections 1 and 2 and Paragraph 3.4 shall not apply until provisions under Section L3 (SMKI Services) take effect;

  • The use of the Recovery Private Key or the Contingency Private Key (including the Symmetric Key) are not required to be used by the DCC until Service Release 1.3; and

  • The DCC shall not be required to set the SMI Status of any Device to ‘recovery’ or ‘recovered’.

The direction letter also activated Sections F6-F10 and the CH Installation and Maintenance Support Materials with an effective date of 10th February 2016.
8th February 2016  SoS Notice 8 February 16
 SEC Section L and SEC Appendix N - SMKI Code of Connection Secretary of State direction, designating the SMKI Interface Design Specification, SMKI Code of Connection, SMKI Repository Interface Design Specification, SMKI Repository Code of Connection, IKI Certificate Policy as SEC Subsidiary Documents with an effective date of 9th March 2016.

The direction also provided an updated Testing Baseline Requirements Document, which is available on the Developing SEC page of the SEC Website.

The direction letter also brought the provisions contained in Section L3 (The SMKI Services), Section L5 (The SMKI Repository Services), Section L11 (The Subscriber Obligations) and Section L12 (Relying Party Obligations) into legal effect from 9th March 2016.

The direction letter also varied Section L3 (The SMKI Services), in respect of the obligation on the DCC under Section L3.4 to provide any SMKI Services that may be requested by an Authorised Subscriber in accordance with the applicable requirements of the SMKI SEC Documents, the DCC shall, for the purposes of ascertaining whether the request is made in accordance with those requirements, disregard any references in Section L3.16 to the SMI Status of a Device.

The direction letter also varied the SMKI Code of Connection, notwithstanding section 3.1.1 of the SMKI Code of Connection or any other provision of the SEC, until the date on which the DCC is first obliged to provide Communication Services under the SEC. The variation is that the DCC’s obligation to respond to Batched Certificate Signing Requests by 08:00 on the following day, shall only apply to Batched Certificate Signing Requests received between 8am and 6pm on a Working Day.

Finally, the direction varied the content of Appendix A (Device Cetificate Policy) and Appendix C (SMKI Compliance Policy) to conform with the format included in Annex F and Annex G to the direction letter from 9th March 2016 until the date of Release 1.3.

Pursuant to Section X6.3, on 11th July 2016 the SoS directed that the above variation to SEC Appendix A and Appendix C is cancelled. The Appendices are to apply without variation from 13th July 2016.
8th March 2016  SoS Notice 8 March 16
SEC Appendix R - Common Test Scenarios Document  Secretary of State direction, designating the Common Test Scenarios Document (CTSD) as a SEC Subsidiary Document with an effective date of 9th March 2016.

The direction letter also includes a variation whereby the Service Requests set out in Annex B, to the direction letter, shall be omitted from the CTSD until such time that the variation to omit the Service Requests is removed.
8th March 2016  SoS Notice 8 March 16
SEC Section H and Section XSecretary of State direction designating provisions for early testing services by introducing new content to the previously unused Section X9 'Interim Device and User Testing', with the effective date 18th April 2016.

The direction letter also cancels the existing variation to Section H14.31 from the date that End-to-End Testing commences. 
14th April 2016  SoS Notice 14 April 16
SEC Section H1, H2, H3.22,and SEC Appendices S and W  The Secretary of State issued a direction letter on 3rd June 2016, designating the DCCKI Certificate Policy and DCCKI Registration Authority Policies and Procedures as SEC Subsidiary Documents with an effective date of 6th June 2016.

The direction letter activates Section H1(User Entry Process), H2 (Registered Supplier Agents) and H3.22 (Managing Demand for DCC User Interface Services) with an effective date of 6th June 2016.

In activating the aforementioned provisions, transitional variations apply to H1.5 and H1.6, which restricts a Party’s ability to propose more than one identification number for each of its User Roles and to remove the requirement on the DCC to accept more than one such number.

In respect to a Section H3.22, a variation provides that each SEC Party shall provide service request forecasts to the DCC as if it were a DCC User, provided that Parties that are not Users and do not intend to submit Service Requests during the period referred to in that Section need not provide forecasts.
3rd June 2016  SoS Notice 3 June 16
SEC Section X and HSecretary of State direction cancels the variation set out in Section X2.4(f). This variation ceases to apply so that the relevant provisions in Section E2 of the SEC relating to the Registration Data Interface Specification and Registration Data Interface Code of Connection are to apply without variation from 6th July 2016.

In accordance with the powers laid out in Section X6, in the same direction letter, the SoS directs that Section H13 (Performance Standards and Reporting) has been varied with effect from 6th July 2016 so that the DCC can use a reasonable proxy measure for Code Performance Measures 1, 2 and 3 (set out in Section H13.1). This variation shall cease to apply on the date of DCC Service release 1.3.
5th July 2016 SoS Notice 5 July 16
SEC Appendices A, B, and CPursuant to SEC Section X5 the SoS directs that with effect from 13th July 2016 the incorporation of Appendix A (Device Certificate Policy), Appendix B (Organisation Certificate Policy) and Appendix C (SMKI Compliance Policy) into SEC.

The Appendices were deleted from the SEC under the SoS Section 88(1) powers under the Energy Act 2008, and immediately re-designated under Section X5 to enable the SoS to make necessary modifications through the re-designation process, which is already the case of other Subsidiary Documents.

Pursuant to SEC Section X6.3, SoS designates that the date SEC Appendix A (Device Certificate Policy) and Appendix C (SMKI Compliance Policy) is to apply without variation, cancelling the variation issued pursuant to Section X6 of the SEC by the SoS on 8th March 2016.
11th July 2016  SoS Notice 11 July 16
SEC Section L13 and Appendices T, U, and V SoS activated SEC Section L13 effective 13th July 2016 pursuant to Section X3.1(b).

Pursuant to Section X3.6, the SoS directed that the following variations in respect of Section L13 apply:

Until Service Release 1.2 or such later date as may be designated by the Secretary of State, the DCC shall not be required by the provisions of Section L13 to:

  • Issue a DCCKI Certificate other than a DCCKI Certificate to be used for the purposes of establishing Transport Layer Security communications (as defined in the DCCKI Certificate Policy);

  • Issue a Personnel Authentication Certificate in response to any Personnel Authentication Certificate Application; or

  • Provide the DCCKI Repository Service, but only insofar as the DCC shall, make available to Users and RDPs such DCCKI Certificates as are required for the purposes of establishing Transport Layer Security communications (as defined in the DCCKI Certificate Policy).

Pursuant to SEC Section X5 SoS also designates SEC Appendix T: DCCKI Interface Design Specification, SEC Appendix U: DCCKI Repository Interface Design Specification and SEC Appendix V: DCCKI CoCo and DCCKI Repository CoCo effective 13th July 2016.
12th July 2016 SoS Notice 12 July 16

SoS Notice: Annex A 12 July 16
SEC Section E, Section K and Section XPursuant to Section X2.7, the Secretary of State (SoS) issued a direction to cancel existing transitional variations in Section X2.4(a), X2.4(b), X2.4(d) (in relation to Section E2.1 and E2.2), X2.4 (e) and X2.5 so that relevant provisions of the SEC relating to Section E2 (Registration Data) and Section K (Charging Methodology) are to apply without variation from 29th September 2016. This allows for the submission of full sets of Registration Data.

In accordance with Section X6, the SoS directs a new transitional variation to Section E1 and E2 to be varied in such that Network Parties are required to continue to provide transitional Registration Data in order for the DCC to calculate charges. This variation is to apply from 29th September 2016.
28th September  2016  SoS Notice 28 September 16
SEC Section H, Section X and Section E

SEC Appendix E, Appendix AB, Appendix AC, Appendix AD, Appendix AH
Pursuant to Section X3.6, the Secretary of State (SoS) issued a direction letter containing the:

  • Introduction of a transitional variation to Section H3.14(g) in relation to Power Outage Alert Target Response Times and Power Restore Alert Response Times, until 30th October 2018;

  • Introduction of a transitional variation to Section H3.24 in relation to changing the day of the month DCC Service Request reporting is required;

  • Introduction of Section H8.16(c) subject to the variations that: the DCC shall not be required to record whether the Services Requests were successfully processed via the Self Service Interface (SSI). Instead of the SSI, DCC will make them available via an alternative secure electronic source. These Variations apply until 30th June 2017;

  • Introduction of a transitional variation to Section H8.17 in relation to DCC’s provision of data to Users. This Variation shall not apply until such date as the Secretary of State may direct;

  • Introduction of transitional variations to the Inventory, Enrolment and Withdrawal Procedures (Appendix AC) in relation to Clause 2.4, stating when Communication Hubs devices are required to be added to the Smart Metering Inventory, and Clauses 5.8, 5.9 and 5.10 (Post-Commissioning Procedures) shall be deemed omitted;

  • Introduction of a transitional variation to the Service Request Processing Document (Appendix AB) and DCC User Interface Specification (Appendix AD). Notwithstanding Clauses 3.8.74.3 and 3.8.110.3 of the DCC User Interface Specification or Clause 6.1(c) of the Service Request Processing Document, the DCC shall not be obliged to send Commands associated with @Update Firmware@ or ‘CoS Update Security Credentials’ Service Requests to Device that have an SMI Status of ‘suspended’;

  • Introduction of a transitional variation to the Self-Service Interface Design Specification (Appendix AH). This variation is to apply on the basis that the DCC shall take reasonable steps to make advisory coverage information that is equivalent to the information referred to as “UC_CSPCoverage_001 (SM WAN network coverage)” available to all other Parties via a readily available and commonly used electronic format (in addition to being available to Users via Self-Service Interface);

  • Introduction of transitional variations to the DCC User Interface Services Schedule (Appendix E): Service Release 1.2 for Central and South regions; and

  • Cancellation of existing variations to Section H8.16(f) (Self Service Interface) to apply with effect from 8th November 2016

Pursuant to Section X3.7, the SoS designates 29th June 2017 as the date that variations to Section H1.5 and H1.6 (User IDs) shall cease to apply.

Pursuant to Section X2.7, the SoS hereby designates 8th November 2016 as the date on which the variations to SEC Section X2.4(c) and Section X2.4(d) in relation to Sections E2.3 cease to apply.
8th November 2016 SoS Notice 8 November 16
SEC Appendix E Pursuant to Section X3.7 of the SEC, the Secretary of State (SoS) designates that the following variations to SEC Appendix E (DCC User Interface Services Schedule), set out in the 8th November 2016 SoS direction letter, shall cease to apply:

  • such that no User is an Eligible User for any Service Request that would result in the DCC sending a Command to a Device in the North Region;

  • such that Registered Supplier Agents are not Eligible Users for any Service Requests; and

  • such that Other Users are not Eligible Users for any Service Requests
25th November 2016  SoS Notice 25 November 16
SEC Appendix R and SEC Section X Pursuant to SEC Section X3.7, the Secretary of State designated the 12th April 2017 as the date on which the variations to the Common Tests Scenarios Document set out in the Secretary of States direction of 8th March shall cease to apply.

Under standard licence condition 21A.6 of the distribution licences, the Secretary of State directed that the specified date for the DNO User Mandate as 12th November 2017.

Under standard licence condition 39.15 of the electricity supply licences and 33.15 of the gas supply licences: The Secretary of State directs that the Large Supplier Advanced Meter Exception End Date shall be 12th November 2017.
11th April 2017 SoS Notice 11 April 17
SEC Section HThe Secretary of State directed on 29th June 2017 that the end-date for the active transitional variations to SEC Section H8.16 (Self-Service Interface) are to be extended.

These variations shall now cease to apply on 2nd November 2017 (or such later date as the Secretary of State may direct)
29th June 2017 SoS Notice 29 June 17
SEC Appendix AD and AC Pursuant to Condition 22 of the DCC Licence and Section X5, the Secretary of State (SoS) designates that the following variations to Appendix AC (Inventory, Enrolment and Withdrawal Procedures) and Appendix AD (DCC User Interface Specification Version) will take effect from 21st July 2017:

Removal of existing Transitional variations to:

  • Section L3 (The SMKI Services)

  • The DCC User Interface Specification & Service Request Processing Document

  • Section H3.24

  • The Inventory, Enrolment and Withdrawal Procedures

  • The User Interface Services Schedule

Activation of Transitional Variation to:

  • Section H8.16

  • Section H8.17
21st July 2017  SoS Notice 21 July 17
SEC Section H and SMKI Recovery ProcedureThe Secretary of State directed on 6th November 2017 the following transitional variations to SEC Section H and the Smart Metering Key Infrastructure (SMKI) Recovery Procedure:

  • On 8 November 2016, the Secretary of State directed that Section H8.16 (Self-Service Interface) of the SEC was to have effect subject to certain variations and designated 30th June 2017 (or such later date as the Secretary of State may direct) as the date on and from which those variations shall cease to apply. On 29th June 2017 the Secretary of State directed that those variations shall cease to apply on 2nd November 2017 (or such later date as the Secretary of State may direct). The Secretary of State hereby directs that those transitional variations will cease to apply on 5th November 2017.

  • On 3rd June 2016, the Secretary of State directed that H1.5 and H1.6 (User IDs) of the SEC was to have effect subject to certain variations. On 8th November 2016 the Secretary of State designated 29th June 2017 (or such later date as the Secretary of State may direct) as the date on and from which those variations shall cease to apply. On 9th February 2017 the Secretary of State directed that those variations shall cease to apply on 2nd November 2017 (or such later date as the Secretary of State may direct). The Secretary of State hereby directs that those transitional variations will cease to apply on 5th November 2017.

  • On 18th July 2017, the Secretary of State directed that the SMKI Recovery Procedure was to have effect subject to certain variations and designated 2nd November 2017 (or such later date as the Secretary of State may direct) as the date on and from which those variations shall cease to apply. The Secretary of State hereby directs that those transitional variations will cease to apply on 29th April 2018 (or such later date as the Secretary of State may direct).
    6th November 2017 SoS Notice 6 November 17
    SEC Schedule 8 and SEC Schedule 11Pursuant to Condition 22 (The Smart Energy Code) of the DCC Licence and Section X5 (Incorporation of Certain Documents into this Code) of the SEC, the Secretary of State directs that, with effect from 6th November 2017:

    • the document set out in Annex A of this direction is hereby designated for incorporation into the SEC, and shall be incorporated into Schedule 8 of the SEC as Version 1.1 of the GB Companion Specification; and

    • the TS Applicability Tables previously designated and incorporated into the SEC as Schedule 11 are hereby re-designated in the form set out in Annex B of this direction.
    6th November 2017 SoS Notice 17 6 November 17
    SEC Appendix AD, SEC Appendix AF, SEC Appendix H, SEC Appendix I, SEC Schedule 10The Secretary of State directed on the 1st February 2018 pursuant to SEC Section X3.6 (Provision to be Effective Subject to Variations) that the following Transitional Variations related to Release 2.0 would be in place:


    • DUIS V2.0 and MMC V2.0 have been designated and incorporated into the SEC, but no SEC Party shall be entitled to exercise the rights set out, nor be obliged to comply with the obligations set out in the documents.


    • DCC obligations regarding Dual Band Communications Hubs (DBCH) are not fully enforced. Whilst the DCC is required to make a limited number of Communications Hubs available, in the event of delays a Party may request a reduction in the number of DBCH forecast or re-ordered. The DCC shall take reasonable steps to accommodate the requested reduction
    1st February 2018 SoS Notice 1st February 2018

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