Report examines the massive future cybersecurity problem of connected cars

February 8, 2016

Ms. Smith

If you are interested in the Internet of insecure Things, then you might like a new report which looks at the cybersecurity of connected vehicles, calling it "one of the biggest issues facing manufacturers today." Cyber Security in the Connected Vehicle attributed that threat to complexity, connectivity, and content. There's a "massive future security problem just around the corner," and it can't be fixed by trying to bolt on security during the implementation phase.

Complexity was called "the worst enemy of security," as a connected car could have "approximately 100 million lines of code," compared to 8 million for an F-35 fighter jet. There has been a dramatic increase in Electronic Computing Units, with some high-end vehicles currently having about 100 ECUs. There has also been a rise in the diversity of in-vehicle systems which provide both luxury and critical features.

Connectivity was called a "double-edged sword" since adding cars to the Internet of Things will continue to make vehicles "a more accessible and more attractive target to adversaries."

BI Intelligence estimated 75% of 92 million cars shipped globally in 2020 will be "connected cars." VDC Research claimed, "Connected vehicles are an attack waiting to happen. The average new car in 2015 contained more than 30 microprocessors, and the cybersecurity of those embedded systems is severely challenged by in-vehicle Internet connectivity." In 2014, only 2% of microprocessors in cars had hardware security features, VDC's report (pdf) claimed.