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The North American Electric Reliability Council (NERC) has been responsible for the reliability of the interconnected grid, of which safety and security are essential ingredients, since 1968. NERC has undertaken several key initiatives (many of which began well before September 11) to focus attention on security matters and to encourage electric power industry participants to act. They include: establishing an Information Sharing and Analysis Center for the Electricity Sector (ES-ISAC); developing security guidelines for the electricity sector; deploying a public key infrastructure (PKI); and creating a spare equipment database. NERC's security initiatives are coordinated by the Critical Infrastructure Protection Advisory Group (CIPAG), which reports directly to the NERC board of trustees. The group comprises electric industry experts in the areas of cyber security, physical security, and operational security. Because of NERC's unique position within the industry, CIPAG has become the focal point for security issues within the electricity sector. To ensure the broadest degree of expertise and experience, CIPAG works closely with other industry groups. This coordination is vital to ensuring the electric industry in North America speaks about security with one voice and acts in a coordinated manner.