Even though there are no known major cyber attacks on vehicles, industry insiders say the threat is growing. A panel of experts gathered today at
"Compared with cars and trucks of a decade ago, our cars and trucks are staggeringly complex," said
Today's new cars are chock full of computer chips, sensors and nano-technology that can be controlled by up to 100,000 lines of software code.
But for a hacker with familiar with the software it's a different story.
"If you can get that sort of access, almost anyone could break into the system," Brown said. "Without that, it is very difficult."
By 2017 more than 60% of cars and trucks will be connected to the Internet.
Automakers, along with suppliers ranging from Sprint to
But there is no single policy or set of industry standards to govern the security of those systems.
That's why Delphi, Battelle, the
The two associations sent a letter
"It is very important that we have an industry wide approach to addressing cyber security issues," Brown said. "It needs to be consistent across the industry as opposed to having separate sets of protocols."
One issue to resolve who should be included in the effort. Phone manufacturers, including Apple and Samsung, are not yet part of the coalition. The interaction between smartphones and vehicle infotainment systems is viewed as the biggest threat to security, Brown said.
With those phones, Brown said, hackers "could potentially take control of the safety critical systems. That's what we want to avoid."
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