The United States Department of Energy (DOE) launched the Operational Technology Defender Fellowship which was marked as another step taken to protect the important infrastructure that supports the country’s prosperity and security. The OT Defender Fellowship initiative is a novel partnership with the Foundation for Defense of Democracies' Center and the Idaho National Laboratory (INL) of DOE for Cyber and Technology Innovation that helps in expanding the cybersecurity knowledge of crucial U.S. front-line critical infrastructure protectors.

Dan Brouillette, the Secretary of Energy confirmed that the energy infrastructure running smoothly during disasters with the help of the operational technology security managers. He expressed that in support of the Cybersecurity Workforce Executive Order of the President, the DOE is proud to back this top training program to make way for opportunities to expand America’s cyber workforce.

According to sources, the OT Defender Fellowship program will continue for a year for operational technology security managers in the complete energy sector to involve cyber and national security experts across the country’s government. The members will get a better knowledge of the tactics and strategies of America’s adversaries and how the US government cyber operators protect the country.

Sen. Angus King, the Cyberspace Solarium Commission (CSC) co-chair stated that securing the country’s energy infrastructure is not an intellectual policy idea but an immediate requirement to safeguard the country from the real threat of malign actors. The Cyberspace Solarium Commission report supports the operationalizing of cybersecurity partnership with the private sector and reforming the way the U.S. government works with the private sector, added the senator explaining them as steps taken by central to our collective defense.

Tom Fanning, President, Chairman, and CEO of Southern Company and CSC Commissioner stated that the organization understands that national security depends on the teamwork of the government and the private sector.

The National and Homeland Security programs’ INL associate laboratory director, Zach Tudor stated that as a pioneer in securing industrial control systems and operational technology from cyber threats, INL is planning to share its experience and knowledge with the private sector through this important fellowship.