Even the most die-hard petrolheads will now surely have to accept that electric vehicles (EV’s) are going to be the dominant selling vehicle of this decade and beyond. Not only Tesla but also every major car manufacturer is now focusing on EV technology due to rising interest from customers keen to help the environment and cut transportation costs in these times of extreme fuel price increases and also Governmental pressure, with the rule in the UK being that the sale of conventional petrol and diesel cars will be banned from 2030. So for the car manufacturers, it is a case of ‘evolve or die’, they will have to either offer EV’s to their customers or cease to sell vehicles altogether.
The big barrier to entry for many people to make the jump from ICE to EV is the existing infrastructure to support these electric vehicles, with the current travel range of a fully charged vehicle still being relatively low but charging points being relatively scarce. To help hasten this required infrastructure upgrade, the UK Government has pledged a £1.3 Billion investment in EV ChargePoints, in homes, streets and motorways across England.
For many people the technology of EV’s is exciting and enticing, a low maintenance and low cost yet high speed, clean and quiet vehicle can certainly be a refreshing upgrade from the old ICE (Internal Combustion Engine) vehicle running on petrol or diesel fuels that are damaging to both the environment and the vehicle owners wallet.
Of course, such a huge rollout of new technology will require new regulations, and as such the Electric Vehicles (Smart Chargepoints) Regulations 2021 were signed into law on 15th December 2021 and came into effect on 30th June 2022. The final part of the regulation relating to security requirements will be bought into effect on 30th December 2022 and will require that all data sent and received by the charging point is encrypted to ensure safety from cyber-attack.
In short, the Smart Chargepoint regulations are aimed at reducing the demand that EV charging puts on the grid by utilising smart functionality to ensure that the vehicle is being charged at a time of reduced grid demand (usually at off-peak times) and that the charge points can send and receive data and also be able to respond to such data to change the rate or time that electricity flows through the charging point. Any ChargePoint installed in a domestic or workplace environment (or any existing ChargePoint being replaced) must feature such smart functionality, otherwise, the installing party can be liable for a fine of up to £10,000.
For the ChargePoint owner/user, these improvements will be hugely beneficial, ensuring that the charging of vehicles is performed in the most cost-effective manner. It is important to point out however that the user is not currently legally required to adhere to the smart settings of the ChargePoint and can override them if so desired.
The final part of the regulations relating to the data security of the ChargePoints will come into effect from 30th December 2022 and states that data sent to and from the ChargePoint must be encrypted and have safety-critical functions as well as cybersecurity processes in place to send notifications in the event of cyber attacks.
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