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BSI Release PAS 185 - Smart Cities specification for data, information and asset security management launched

BSI, the business standards company, has launched a new Smart Cities specification for safeguarding data and information security in cities. PAS 185 Smart Cities – Specification for establishing and implementing a security-minded approach lists requirements for creating a framework for the security-minded management of a city.

The PAS was commissioned by the Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI) – the government authority for protective security advice to the UK national infrastructure. PAS 185 outlines the potential security threats to a smart city that could affect the people who live and work there, as well as outlining appropriate responses to those threats.

The goal of a smart city is to join up sectors – such as utilities, transport, or health – across organizational boundaries into a whole-city approach for the day-to-day running of services. The Smart Cities ethos is that greater availability of data and information can improve existing assets, which include refuge facilities, transport infrastructure, and housing.

Data and information can then be used in conjunction with the integration of services and systems to improve service provision for current and future citizens. In addition, information acquired from outcome-based contracting can be used to improve the efficiency of newly built assets through a better understanding of whole-life performance of existing assets.   

The framework in PAS 185 can be used to create appropriate and proportionate security measures to deter and/or disrupt hostile, malicious, fraudulent and criminal activities. Crucially, implementation of these measures will not prevent delivery of the city’s aims. Further, the PAS considers security holistically, looking at governance, personnel, physical, and technological security issues and solutions.  

Aspects related to the environment of the smart city – including scale, organizational complexity, complex service delivery and ownership of smart city infrastructure – are covered in PAS 185. How an organization or individual should respond to incidents, security breaches, and changing risk levels is also outlined in the specification.  

Dan Palmer, Head of Market Development for Manufacturing at BSI, said:

“Greater availability of data and information can transform the way our cities are run – helping public and private sector decision-makers to provide a better environment for citizens. But it is critically important that this data and information is handled responsibly, and doesn’t open up the city to cyber or other attacks. PAS 185 was created to provide a framework for the development of an overall security strategy for the handling, management and sharing of data.

“PAS 185 will help decision-makers in smart cities, as well as smart city data officers, understand and guard against the risks involved as they move into the digital age. It will also be of benefit to those interested in utilizing data and information to effectively deliver smart city objectives.”

PAS 185 is a companion document to other Smart Cities documents, including PAS 183 Smart Cities – Guide to establishing a decision making framework for sharing data and information services, and PAS 184 Smart Cities – Developing project proposals for delivering smart city solutions. The City Standards Institute is among the organizations that participated on the PAS 185 steering group. The Cities Standards Institute is a collaboration between BSI and the Future Cities Catapult to create a standards-based community of good practice for cities and the companies they work with.

The following organizations were involved in the development of PAS 185 as members of the steering group: A Luck Associates; Arup; BIM Task Group; Bodvoc Ltd; City of Bradford, Metropolitan District Council; Bristol City Council; Cities Standard Institute; Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI); Department for Transport; Digital Catapult; FlyingBinary; Future Cities Catapult; FlyingBinary; Future Cities Catapult; Institute of Asset Management; IoT Security Foundation; National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC); Peterborough City Council; Trustworthy Software Foundation; Turner & Townsend; University of Cambridge, Centre for Smart Infrastructure and Construction. 

The PAS 185 is available on the BSI site.