Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Information Security

First Advisor

Liren Zhang

Second Advisor

Atef Abdrabou

Third Advisor

Khaled Shuaib


The distribution system is one of the main components in a smart grid, readings are transferred from the distribution substations to the control center. Compromising transferred system data will result in drawing wrong conclusions about current operation status at the control center. Which leads to sending wrong operational commands that may result in very serious consequences.

Firstly, we propose a scalable communications architecture for future smart grid distribution systems (i.e. Security Aware Distribution System Architecture - SADSA). The architecture is adaptable to use Wi-Fi or other technologies to transfer smart grid information. The architecture is studied from various angles. Both communication and cybersecurity challenges are extracted. In addition, the work provides a detailed discussion on how the proposed architecture meets National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) cybersecurity requirements for smart grids.

Secondly, we propose the False Data Injection Prevention Protocol - FDIPP, the protocol prevents packet injection, duplication, alteration and node replication. In other words, it guarantees both system and data integrity. The protocol was analyzed using formal security analysis. Furthermore, Network Simulator 2 is used to evaluate both SADSA and FDIPP. The simulation is used to measure the delay and security overhead introduced from FDIPP and the proposed architecture