Press release STOP-IT: Public Warning Notification System for water infrastructure protection

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Strategic, tactical and operational protection of water infrastructure is the core of STOP-IT, the European H2020 funded research project that focuses on finding solutions to protect critical water infrastructure against physical and cyber threats, and the combination thereof.

The project has now developed its Public Warning Notification System (PWNS) with two main functionalities: detect and report incidents and inform users and citizens. This system is a key element in the project as it activates the first phase of the solution that is triggering an alert that in turn will ultimately put in place the corresponding response plan.

The PWNS processes data, alerts and detected incidents from external sources and reports them to the STOP-IT core platform. At this initial stage the incident has to be validated by a human operator in most cases. Once this is done, the anomaly is notified to the system that, by cross-checking with other incident-related data from different sources, can identify the risk situation. This assessment then will be sent to the visualisation interface for water utilities, which starts a response plan with actions to be executed when specific situations arise. These actions are based on different parameters set by water operators and can include both corrective and mitigation measures. The system also sends the information and instructions to follow to the users and citizens using the most appropriate channels, i.e. email, SMS, mobile app notifications, etc.

Water agencies, regulators, municipalities and environmental agencies can benefit from this Public Warning Notification System. The tool is also useful for any industrial operator who needs to monitor processes and can integrate data sources or deploy sensors to capture data variables. Such data can be processed to generate alerts when specific conditions, like threshold limits, absolute/relative variations or other rules upon request from the operator, are met. Response plans and lists of action to be taken when a specific situation is presented can be defined individually to enable the operator to implement the appropriate actions.
At this stage the system uses OneMind, the proprietary solution of Worldsensing, as visualisation interface. The STOP-IT solution for the user interface is currently being developed by RISA within the project. The tool is publicly available and open source. The code is available at the STOP-IT GitHub repository. A Zenodo record for the code has also been created for the purpose of traceability and integrity of the code delivered.

Find out more about the project and this outcome at https://stop-it-project.eu or at this video that presents a simulation where a citizen reports an incident from his Twitter account.