Cybersecurity is important for connected cars, says report

hackinwhitecarFrost & Sullivan’s recent whitepaper, Cybersecurity: Automakers Remain Passive as Government Takes Action, analyzes cyber security challenges, identifies solutions, and outlines a best-practices approach.

Historically, vehicles had been closed systems; there was no need for a detailed security model. However, as the industry evolves, vehicles are now communicating with other vehicles and outside infrastructure.

In today’s connected world, it is just a matter of time before an unsupervised life-threatening attempt to hack into and control a vehicle occurs, claims the report.

In 2014, over 50 percent of the vehicles sold in the United States were connected. Frost & Sullivan believes the inevitable malicious attempts will target a vehicle that is already on the road. The potential for fatalities is a reality and with no current means of retroactively securing existing vehicles, OEMs must immediately develop an answer to this issue.

Frost & Sullivan Automotive & Transportation Industry Analyst Doug Gilman notes that Cybersecurity will continue to be a dominant topic, and OEMs, rather than the government, must take back the leadership role.

As vehicles become more connected, the threat potential increases. No automaker wants to be the first to report their vehicle was maliciously hacked, which inevitably will happen. With no current method of identifying whether a car has been hacked, OEMs face a two-fold challenge: securing future vehicles and retrofitting security for existing fleets, notes the report.

The industry is constantly evolving, and vehicle vulnerabilities are increasing. There is no proven vulnerability tracking, all connected vehicles are vulnerable. If automakers expect to have strong marks on their cyber dashboard, they cannot expect to accomplish it alone. The hacker needs to be right only once; automakers need to be right 100% of the time.

Frost & Sullivan, developed this whitepaper to outline the trending topic of cyber security. During its composition, two fundamental cyber security events transpired – the federal government proposed significant auto security legislation, and a Jeep Cherokee’s infotainment system was successfully penetrated in a now famous, but somewhat irresponsible hack, which resulted in the recall of 1.4 million Chrysler vehicles.