The cars that we drive rely more and more on electronics with each passing model year. As an owner, it can help you manage the maintenance of your vehicle, lock the doors remotely, and check the charge (in the case of an EV or Hybrid). Several automakers and tech companies are also looking to have electronics and computers completely drive our vehicles, leaving us free behind the wheel.
As with any piece of technology, the danger of hacks exists. Cyber research has shown that, given the correct access to a vehicle, it would be possible to take control of a vehicle’s braking and steering systems, as well as other components of a car. In the case of an autonomous car, this could be extra problematic.
To alleviate fears about hackers, Senators Richard Blumenthal and Ed Markey introduced a plan for new legislation to require manufacturers to ensure that their cars meet a certain standard of protection against hackers. According to WIRED, the NHTSA and FTC would work together to set and enforce the standards.
The standards that car makers would have to meet would focus on protecting anyone unauthorized from taking control of the vehicle, and also safeguard any personal or location data the vehicle might collect through connections with a GPS or phone.
Many automakers have already begun to take steps to protect their vehicles. BMW released a security patch for their vehicles a few months ago to prevent anyone from hacking a vehicle’s locks, General Motors has created a cybersecurity chief position, and Ford actually held a Hackaton to expose weaknesses in their systems.
Take a look at the article from WIRED to learn more about the details of the bill and the future of car hacking. At The News Wheel we’ll keep our eyes peeled and give you more details as they emerge.