On Monday, US regulators stated that automakers should prioritise data security in their vehicles, developing layers of protection that shield them from potential hacking attempts. It is worth noting that these are not enforceable rules, merely recommendations.
These recommendations were made in hopes of establishing an industry standard when it comes to protecting automated vehicles against cyberattacks.
One of the suggestions made was to establish a group that shares information about data security threats, which is something the top five manufacturers are already doing.
After data security researchers managed to successfully take control of a Jeep Cherokee last year, automakers started accelerating their efforts to combat hacking threats. For example, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles recalled 1.4 million vehicles in July 2015 in order to install software that protects the vehicles against potential data security breaches in the future.
As an increasing number of manufacturers are following Tesla’s example, the data security of systems placed in vehicles is becoming a more important subject. A lot of systems are offering upgrades through wireless data links. Earlier this year, the Federal Bureau of Investigation issued a warning that criminals could exploit the online software update mechanism to gain unauthorised access to vehicles.
The NHTSA recommends that manufacturers test their vehicles against potential data security breaches, and document their findings as well as their assessment of the risks.
On Monday, the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers confirmed that the NHTSA guidelines seem to support the steps taken by the AUTO-ISAC.