NRECA has released the new Co-op Cybersecurity Lexicon, which offers insights about member expectations of their co-ops when it comes to securing their data and protecting the grid. It also gives key advice about how to discuss cyber issues proactively and reactively.

“Consumer-members have four core expectations of their co-op: To be transparent, honest, reliable and responsive," said Stephen Bell, NRECA's senior director of media and public relations. “This project highlights the importance of meeting those expectations when it comes to cybersecurity and the positive results a proactive approach can deliver."

The research, which extends the Co-op Lexicon Project released by NRECA in 2018, was conducted by maslansky + partners. It involved a national survey of 500 co-op members and several in-depth focus groups. Resources from the study include a cyber communication guide, a language strategy playbook and a new webinar for co-op leaders.

Its findings focus on specific language that resonates with members when communicating generally about a co-op's cybersecurity efforts as well as in the aftermath of an incident.

“This study proves that there is a way to proactively discuss co-op cyber readiness with co-op consumer-members without triggering alarm bells," Bell said. “Discussing this in a way they can approach enhances the co-op's reputation and provides a meaningful increase in consumer confidence."