Experts hope V2X connectivity will reduce cybersecurity risks for intelligent transportation
The future of connected and autonomous vehicles (CAVs) depends on a number of factors, and one of the most vital ones is cybersecurity.
Protecting the vehicles, the highways and the infrastructure that support them is now seen as one of the key elements to accelerating the technologies. One emerging technology that will inevitably have an impact on vehicle-to-everything (V2X) communications is cellular-vehicle-to-everything (C2X), which the GSMA explains is “designed to connect vehicles to each other, to roadside infrastructure, to other road-users and to cloud-based services”. The aim is to enable intelligent transport, which also needs be secured.
So, what are the cyber-risks that could impact V2X communications and infrastructure, as well as the safety of connected and autonomous vehicles? Well, according to Jaeson Yoo, Chief Security Officer at Autocrypt, the line between cyber-risks and human safety “are becoming increasingly blurred every year”. Cyber-risks can impact on the safety of CAVs directly, and a hacking event could, in the worst-case scenario, lead to an accident causing loss of life.
Yoo explains: “After all, if data transmissions can be manipulated by hackers, this can undermine real-life safety. Successful attacks on communications infrastructure can affect all endpoints, including vehicles. Simply put, the costs of cybersecurity negligence can no longer be tolerated. Unlike the past, cyberattacks are no longer limited to embarrassment, loss of brand reputation, or even financial loss. In V2X communications and infrastructure, this could mean the life of not just the driver, but so many more lives become highly vulnerable.”
Network node dangers
Moshe Shlisel, CEO of GuardKnox Cyber Technologies takes a look at it from an electric-vehicle perspective, highlighting that connected and autonomous vehicles are going to be the most important nodes within the wider network of the automotive Internet of Things (IoT). He warns: “If you can hack a car, you can hack every car or infrastructure that is connected to the car. From the charging station, you can connect to the grid and then to the power plant, which becomes a national risk. Nobody is taking responsibility for mitigating this risk – worldwide.
“Secondly, all the pieces of infrastructure, such as traffic lights, can be controlled by V2V or V2X, and hackers can remotely control the traffic lights and control the traffic in the city. The fact that the car is being connected to the city infrastructure, and the car itself is not protected, can jeopardize the daily life of a city.”
Shlisel points out that that even Hollywood has known about this potential risk for quite a while. In the Batman film, The Dark Knight, traffic is being controlled remotely. So, if you have a vehicle connected to mine, to the car around me and to the infrastructure, there is a significant risk of cyberattack and of an adverse event taking place, including a crash, if they aren’t sufficiently protected. The hacker could hop from car to car, too, making the situation far worse.
To read the complete article, visit TU-Automotive.