Issue Resolution Expert Group (IREG) update July 2016

IREG met on 13th July 2016 and discussed the following:

Amendments to D0215/D0268 Data Flows

IREG considered changes to the D0215 and D0268 Data Flows which had been developed during the IREG meeting on 11th May 2016 following Impact Assessment of Solution Pre-Assessment Form (SPF) 0096. The proposer of the original SPF noted the Technical Assurance of Metering Expert Group (TAMEG) had considered the amendments and had rejected the proposed changes to the D0268 Data Flow. TAMEG had further raised some concerns that the amended D0215 Data Flow did not deliver the intentions of the original proposal.

The Balancing and Settlement Code (BSC) representative informed IREG that they were currently reviewing commissioning processes following the implementation of BSC Modification P283 in 2014, and were proposing to introduce a separate Data Flow for commissioning related items which would also affect the current D0215 and D0268 proposals; a first working group meeting would be held in early August to discuss this.

IREG agreed that a joint meeting between IREG, BSC representatives and TAMEG should be held following this first working group meeting to jointly discuss all proposals in this area and agree a way forward.

A special IREG will be scheduled in late August for this purpose.

DTC Annex C amendments to clarify format of CT and VT ratios

IREG briefly considered the recommended addition to Data Transfer Catalogue (DTC) Annex C for the D0150, D0215 and D0268 Data Flows to limit entries in the Current Transformer (CT) and Voltage Transformer (VT) ratio Data Items to numerics and slashes only, and recommended that the proposed additions should be progressed as a Change Proposal (CP).

Conventions for Meter Register Ids on smart meters

Following Impact Assessment, the MRA Development Board (MDB) deferred DTC CP 3491A to IREG to address a number of comments raised by parties. IREG discussed the CP and the proposer agreed to re-raise version 2 of the CP at the July MDB meeting, after amending the proposed Meter Register Id conventions to remove leading zeros.

MIF206 – Priority Services

IREG discussed MRA Issue Form (MIF) 206, which was raised to introduce changes to the DTC to implement the recommendations outlined in Ofgem’s Priority Services Register (PSR) Review consultation. The raiser outlined the proposed amendments to the D0225 Data Flow and J1699 Data Item and invited IREG to consider a strawman guidance document on the proposed implementation approach. Parties noted that a separate discussion would be beneficial to define the governance arrangements around the proposed PSR changes, and agreed to further discuss this at the August IREG meeting.

MIF207 – Use of Special Characters for Data Item J1844

IREG considered the proposal outlined in MIF207 to allow the use of the “@” character in the J1844 Data Item and recommended that the solution should be progressed to a CP.

RFI_16_0520_02 – Smart Prepayment Debt Assignment

IREG considered responses to Request for Information (RFI) 16_0520_02, noting the majority of parties had shown an interest in carrying out an end-to-end review of the Debt Assignment Protocol (DAP) in order to feed into ongoing Ofgem work.

Parties noted Ofgem’s confirmation regarding the applicability of DAP to smart metered Customers, which stated that DAP applied based on the Customer’s payment arrangement with their Old Supplier and irrespective of arrangements between Customer and New Supplier. IREG noted that this created a number of issues for Suppliers, who would currently not be able to identify whether a smart metered Customer had been on a prepayment or credit tariff with their Old Supplier. The Group further highlighted there would be significant impacts on Customers if the New Supplier would have to instigate DAP irrespective of the payment arrangements a Customer had chosen with their New Supplier.

IREG concluded that a bigger piece of work would need to be carried out to fully consider the strategic implications, Customer impacts and process amendments required to make DAP work for smart metered Customers. It was suggested that a separate working group should be set up either under Energy UK or the MRA for this purpose.

Security requirements of individual Data Flows not sent via the DTN

IREG considered a number of Data Flows currently not transmitted via the Data Transfer Network (DTN) in respect of their security arrangements and recommended that the D0305 Data Flow should be moved to the DTN once the outcomes of Ofgem’s Objection review are known, and provided Customer requested Objections would continue. IREG further deferred consideration of the DAP related Data Flows, to be included in the overall discussion around the future of DAP.

The Group noted that the revenue protection related Data Flows D0237, D0238 and D0239 were currently at least partially sent outside of the DTN, and stated that further to these Data Flows, the MRA Agreed Procedures (MAPs) contained some obligations on parties to share Customer information outside of any Data Flows, without providing guidance as to the relevant data encryption to be used.

IREG requested that the MRA Security Committee reconsiders all instances where confidential Customer data is currently required to be sent between parties outside of the DTN and recommends a suitable encryption method to be used by all parties.