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Automotive Cybersecurity: A Global Conversation About Test, Evaluation, and Industry Trends

September 25, 2020
As the automotive industry embraces the future of advanced transportation mobility, the conversation about cybersecurity is increasingly important. At the forefront of the discussion is cybersecurity testing and industry trends for connected, automated, and electrified vehicles. Representatives from the Michigan Economic Development Corp. (MEDC), the Kingdom of the Netherlands, the Netherlands’ Consulate General, the American Center for Mobility, and GRIMM, engaged in a high level discussion on the risks and rewards of advanced transportation mobility and practices to increase the cyber resilience of connected vehicles and the world in which they operate.

Partnership between Michigan and the Netherlands

Last month, Gov. Whitmer announced plans for a corridor project that would stretch from Ann Arbor to Detroit, and advance key policy goals related to safety, accessibility, affordability, and equity of transportation. As a leader in the automotive landscape with a newly created Office for Future Mobility and Electrification, it seems natural that the state would play a part in ushering in the next generation of cybersecurity.

Michigan has the right university ecosystem in place and the right talent, as home to researchers, coders, mathematicians, and analysts, Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist said.

With these advancements and the Netherland’s top ranking in automated vehicle readiness in mind, it makes sense that the State of Michigan and the Netherlands hold a memorandum of understanding that outlines a partnership of shared research and knowledge related to intelligent vehicle transportation.

Convergence of Industries

The mobility industry represents a convergence of multiple industries, including automotive, cybersecurity, telecom, energy, insurance, technology, retail, and more. The American Center for Mobility (ACM) serves as a collaborative effort between government, automotive, and academic organizations focused on speeding up the mobility industry through research and development, using vehicle laboratories, road systems, and test environments.

The current focus for connected and automated vehicle (CAV) testing needs is on the network and infrastructure, including optimized cell coverage, fiber optic cable, cloud data management, and more, said Reuben Sarkar, CEO of ACM.

ACM has partnered with cybersecurity company, GRIMM, to offer integrated automotive for cybersecurity services and a Car-Hacking Workbench to ACM customers.

Cybersecurity Trends and Automotive

Jennifer Tisdale, principal, Cyber-Physical Systems for GRIMM has worked to review the automotive cybersecurity trends in conjunction with levels of autonomy, finding that as levels progress, risks increase.

Security concerns include worries related to electric vehicles and charging stations, CAVs and shifting fatality responsibility, intelligent transportation systems and high impact navigation risk, and electronic control units and system hacking.

As systems become more autonomous, there is an opportunity for policy makers to bring cohesion and create standards and policies to keep pace with changing hacking methods, Tisdale said.