Utilities using Apogee’s ENVOY proactive messaging platform are seeing extraordinary results. The platform’s communication channels include personalized video bill explanations, text, and email messages that inform customers of payment options, financial assistance programs, low and no-cost ways to save, and rate options. What makes the messaging captivating is each message is composed using the customer’s billing history and AMI data, making it personal and relevant to each household. During the COVID-19 crisis, this communications strategy shows customers the utility cares, is helping them reduce energy costs, and identifies ways to manage their financial burden.
For cyber criminals and the organizations they are targeting, it’s the wild west out there. The scourge of COVID-19 is driving workers to log in from home and widening the utility attack surface even further. Community-owned utilities are victims of ransomware and other attacks at an alarming rate. As part of their cybersecurity risk management efforts, utilities should investigate the financial and operational security provided by the cyber liability insurance program from Marsh Wortham Power Gen Insurance through Hometown Connections, Inc.
A visionary leader of public power technology management, Branndon Kelley of American Municipal Power, Inc. (AMP) has joined the Board of Directors of Hometown Connections, Inc. AMP is one of six joint action agencies that co-own Hometown Connections. Mr. Kelley is AMP’s Senior Vice President of Technology & Chief Information Officer and AMP’s representative on the Hometown Board.
Cyber criminals are trying to leverage the COVID-19 emergency by sending out “phishing” attacks that lure internet users to click on malicious links or files. Through emails with phony pledges for health information, hackers are gaining access to sensitive data. AESI-US, Inc. is deploying remote cybersecurity services to help community-owned utilities protect against these dangerous COVID-19 phishing attacks.
To help community-owned utilities design their COVID-19 response, GreatBlue Research has developed a low-cost digital research solution to effectively and efficiently gather insights directly from customers.
Utility markets are seeing substantial changes in load characteristics and energy prices as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. The Energy Authority (TEA) is helping community-owned utilities develop risk management strategies that will offset the current volatility in wholesale energy markets.
Expanding the scope of services offered to public power systems, AESI-US, Inc. is helping municipal utilities maximize the return on their operations technology (OT) investments and optimize operations. AESI’s technical knowledge and real-world utility expertise in IT/OT engineering provides vital support to utility personnel.
We know this a stressful and critical time for all Public Utilities and their customers. This pandemic hits home for every one of us, and we are dedicated to working together to help public utility communities recover and move forward.
While we have all been focused on managing during COVID-19 developments, assessing future business scenarios is essential. When will normal operations return? What are the implications of this uncertainty to customers, staff, operations and future projects/initiatives?
Through its work with Apogee Interactive, Horry Electric Cooperative has achieved unprecedented success engaging its members with Short Message Service (SMS) or text messaging. Located on the South Carolina coast and serving 85,543 members, Horry EC is among the State’s fastest growing residential communities. With a goal of engaging members in an ongoing dialogue about their energy use, and using a previously untapped communication channel, Horry chose Apogee Interactive’s Engagement Platform for Information and Communication (EPIC) to text message its members with personalized, relevant, time-sensitive messages.
The COVID-19 pandemic raises many issues for both insureds and insurers. As events continue to unfold, organizations should work closely with their advisors and counsel to address their myriad concerns. In a new report, COVID-19: Evolving Insurance and Risk Management Implications, Marsh provides an overview of some of the key coverage, claims, and risk management areas related to the pandemic and also looks at how businesses can actively respond to current effects while continuing to plan and prepare for future ones.