Discover how your smart meter works, what data Sibelga can see, and how these are protected. We ensure your privacy, commit to cybersecurity, and adhere to strict radiation standards. Your trust is our priority.
What can you find on this page?
1. How are your consumption data read?
Reading your consumption data remotely
The smart electricity meter allows remote data reading. However, in Brussels, this function is set to 'off' by default according to the Electricity Ordinance for the Brussels-Capital Region. This means that as a network manager, we cannot read your data remotely. Activate this option yourself immediately after installation as it offers many advantages:
- Your supplier can issue an accurate invoice.
- We can make remote adjustments to the meter over time (e.g., opening).
- You gain more control over your consumption with our free energy manager app, available soon.
- You contribute to better management of the Brussels energy network.
In some exceptional cases, remote data reading is AUTOMATICALLY activated:
- meters connected to a production installation (e.g., solar panels).
- meters connected to an electric vehicle charging point.
- customers involved in energy sharing.
- customers participating in a flexibility market.
How to give permission to read your consumption data remotely?
Currently, this is not yet possible. However, during the first half of 2024, our free application for tracking your energy consumption will be available, allowing you to do so directly through the app.
Local reading of your consumption data
The smart meter has a P1 port, which is open by default. With specific equipment plugged into this P1 port, you can read your consumption data locally.
2. What consumption data does Sibelga see?
Your smart meter only measures how much energy you consume during a specific period. Or if you have solar panels, it also measures your injection into the grid. The exact data that can be read depends on whether you have given permission for remote reading.
WITH permission for remote reading
In this case, as a network manager, we see the following information:
- meter reading curves (kWh)
- daily meter readings (kWh)
- voltage data (Volts)
For the latest type of meters (211), the consumption history includes:
- 30 days for meter reading curves
- 60 days for daily meter readings
- 10 days for voltage data (power quality)
WITHOUT permission for remote reading
In this case, only voltage data (power quality) from the electricity grid is visible. This does not include your personal consumption.
Good to know
Neither Sibelga nor your supplier can see what you consume per device or your lifestyle, such as whether you cook or take a shower.
3. When are your consumption data read?
If you have given permission to read your data remotely, this is done once a day. In case of communication problems with the meter, this may be done several times a day.
The complete available history is not read daily. This is only important during the initial reading of the meter or in case of recurring communication problems.
4. What does Sibelga do with your consumption data?
Consumption data is only shared with third parties in very specific cases:
At your request:
As a user, it is possible to give third parties access to your consumption data. For example, because you want your energy supplier to examine your energy consumption.
At the request of government agencies:
Under strictly legal conditions, government agencies can access the consumption profile of certain customers (e.g., in the context of a judicial investigation).
5. Cyber security: how does the smart meter communicate?
Your smart meter sends consumption data via the LTE network. This communication method, also known as 4G or Long Term Evolution, improves communication in places with weak signals, such as basements. This significantly increases the chance of successful connections.
Moreover, information via LTE is not sent all at once but in small pieces. Throughout the entire process, all consumption data is encrypted for additional security.
Did you know?
Sibelga regularly conducts studies on potential (cyber)security risks of the smart meter. These studies cover not only data collection or communication methods but also receiving and storing this data in our data center.
Based on this research, we take a series of organizational and technical measures to minimize security risks. Sibelga does this in consultation with other Belgian network managers (Fluvius, Ores, and Resa) who have the same type of meters.
6. Radiation standards for smart meters
In electric devices, there is always some degree of electromagnetic radiation. The radiation emitted by the smart meters installed by Sibelga complies with the applicable standards in the Brussels-Capital Region.
The CE marking on the meter ensures that emission levels comply with European standards.
Radiation 100x lower than the standard
A study conducted by Ghent University, commissioned by Leefmilieu Brussel, revealed that the highest average radiation value measured at 40 cm from the smart meter was only 0.9% compared to the applicable standard in the Brussels-Capital Region (6 V/m at 900 MHz).
In other words, the average field values are at least a hundred times lower than the standard. The farther you are from the meter and the more obstacles (e.g., walls), the weaker the electromagnetic radiation becomes. In most cases, the meter is located in the basement.
It's important to note that the Brussels radiation standards are already the strictest in the country and are lower than what Europe recommends. Additionally, the meter only transmits data for a few seconds per day, making the amount of radiation from smart meters extremely limited.