Automakers need to quickly ramp up car cyber security image

Just a few years back, the auto industry was never implicated when cyber security experts talked about present and future trends. All that has changed now, with increasingly sophisticated systems offered inside the modern automobile.

And automakers are now unable to downplay the threat of a hacker attacking a car, since numerous researchers have already showed how easy it is to actually take command remotely of a vehicle. The recently unveiled vulnerabilities have become the spotlight for numerous analysts and industry experts – with signals being sent all over the industry. Automakers are also taking notice, with BMW for instance recently sending a security patch to some 2.2 million vehicles with connectivity systems. Anuja Sonalker, a cyber security expert from Battelle, a private research institute based in Columbus, Ohio says the only protection automakers actually had until now was the fact that hackers have larger and more productive targets – such as banking systems.

For now, hacking a car – other than making it available for grand theft auto, actually doesn’t accomplish much. Instead, experts believe the cars might become the “springboard” for gaining access into a larger target – such as such as computers and servers used by the police or financial institutions. But there are numerous ways to gain access a car’s operating system: from Internet connectivity and infotainment systems to UBS ports and radio signals. The good news is that other industries could lend a saving hand: particularly the aerospace sector, where cyber security is fundamental as far as engineering systems are concerned.