Consumer Organizations’ Grave Concerns on Smart Meters Ignored

Consumer Organizations’ Grave Concerns on Smart Meters Ignored

by K.T. Weaver, SkyVision Solutions 


In June 2011, a resolution regarding smart meters was issued by the Transatlantic Consumer Dialogue (TACD).  The Transatlantic Consumer Dialogue (TACD) is a forum of US and EU consumer organizations which develops and agrees on joint consumer policy recommendations to the US government and European Union to promote the consumer interest in EU and US policy making.

Due to “grave concerns” with smart meters, here is the formal guidance that was provided to the US government and utility operators as part of the TACD resolution:  “Forbid utilities from installing smart meters without consumers’ informed consent.”

Why was this crucial guidance ignored?  Was it a matter of willful ignorance (or blindness) or willful negligence?

TACD Logo with Added SM

TACD Resolution on Smart Meters (2011)

The full name for the TACD resolution on smart meters is “Resolution on Privacy and Security Related to Smart Meters.”  Here are a few excerpts from that document:

TACD members … have grave concerns related to the privacy, data protection and security implications of smart meters.  The dramatic increase in the granularity of data available and frequency of collection of household energy consumption means that the smallest detail of household life can be revealed, with potential risks for consumers including identity theft, augmenting private and data broker consumer profiles (US), real-time surveillance, and unwanted publicity.  In addition to these smart meter privacy risks there may also be security risks — e.g., software or firmware, programming or installation, interoperability conflicts with other smart-grid-enabled technologies, and the threat of cyber attack.”


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