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Energy Department, industry contribute $7M to EV cybersecurity project

Breana Noble
The Detroit News

A Michigan-based cybersecurity company will receive $7 million in funding from the U.S. Energy Department and others to develop infrastructure that protects the electric grid from cyberattacks while electric vehicles are recharging.

The concern is that a hacker or a virus-infected vehicle could intentionally or unintentionally damage the larger electric grid by accessing chargers. The Dream Team LLC, a newly formed entity for the project, in collaboration with Ypsilanti's American Center for Mobility and the state of Michigan will seek to integrate technology in the charging systems to protect the grid.

American Center for Mobility will offer a testbed to Michigan-based cybersecurity company Dream Team LLC to develop technology to protect the electric grid from cyberattacks from electric vehicles.

"Dream Team is committed to developing and transitioning technology that improves the safety, security and reliability of the grid by changing the way that power is delivered, bought and sold,” Dream Team CEO Duncan Woodbury said in a statement.

The Energy Department's Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy is contributing a $4.7 million grant that is supplemented by a $2.3 million industry match contribution. Partners in the project include DTE Energy Co., Detroit-based NextEnergy, the University of Michigan Dearborn and Wayne State University.

DTE Energy will provide expertise on the electric grid. The American Center for Mobility will provide a facility for testing to ensure the technology protects against attacks and can detect them in real-time.

Twitter: @BreanaCNoble