Editor's note: If you are attending APEC later this month, be sure to attend the Smart Grid Rap Session Tuesday evening at 5.

smart grid(Information Week) - Utility companies will invest more than $21 billion on cybersecurity over the next five years to protect the world's electrical grids, according to a new report.

With cybersecurity a top priority for the United States and other governments, more money is going into protecting the so-called smart grid, according to Pike Research. The firm forecasts that annual spending on smart grid cybersecurity will more than triple from $1.2 billion last year to $3.7 billion in 2015.

Security experts long have been concerned about the safety of electrical power grids. Those fears have risen as utilities adopt smart grid technologies, which connect myriad devices and systems on a single network, making them vulnerable to attack. Reports surfaced last year that hackers infiltrated the U.S. power grid.

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