"The product, VSAT, or "Vulnerability Self Assessment Tool," has been created with help and $500,000 funding from the federal Environmental Protection Agency by the Association of Metropolitan Sewerage Agencies. AMSA promotes sound, scientific and cost effective laws and regulation of the industry.

(Photo courtesy of EPA)

"VSAT is a system to rate all of your assets on the degree to which you believe they are vulnerable. It will give you a priority of what you need to do first and then give you the options, the costs associated with those, the time it may take and the technology available to remediate them," says Adam Krantz, a spokesman for AMSA.

Krantz noted that most people see the need for assuring the security of drinking water systems, but he says the security vulnerabilities of wastewater systems are "actually a lot more numerous." He points out that the systems require storage of large quantities of chemicals, are potentially vulnerable to computer hackers and disruptions that could cause dire consequences, and are composed of large conduit systems that snake through cities underground. Details for obtaining the software will be posted at www.vsat.net on the shipping date.

ew software for identifying, analyzing, prioritizing and remediating security risks at wastewater treatment utilities is being packaged for free distribution July 22.