With the rise of the driverless connected car, manufacturers need to put security at the fore

Last updated: 14 November 2019

Rather excitingly I read the other day that by 2020 90% of cars will carry built-in connectivity and as I wrote just before the holiday season, the connected car is seen as the greatest disruption since the invention of the automobile.

It’s a thrilling time to part of the Internet of Things industry and all the household names in motoring seem to be getting in on the act.  Mercedes-Benz has just unveiled plans at CES to create luxury self-driving cars, one of a flurry of upcoming investments it hopes will turn its connected cars into what it calls “mobile living rooms.”

But many are questioning the safety and security of such developments, as internet connections and wireless networks without adequate protection leave cars and their owners vulnerable to hackers. The Independent’s Emma Finnamore (@finamoray) has written about it in greater detail here.

As Edmund Kind, president of the AA, told The Times: “You’re getting cars that are connected to the internet 24 hours a day. If cybercriminals targeted automobiles like they’re targeting other things we’d be in for a hard and fast ride.”

It is vital that car manufacturers take security into serious consideration when developing their connected car offerings and that consumers are educated on the risks and how to protect themselves.

Embedded M2M SIMS and the overall end to end security infrastructure around them can help identify individual vehicles, encrypt communications and ensure secure global connectivity for smart vehicle systems including eCall emergency solutionsvehicle telematics, navigation and more and are optimized to survive extreme environments.

There is also the question of data ownership, much like with wearable technology. Who owns the data created by these cars? The AA argues the consumer should be given complete control, free choice and service providers fair competition. It is certainly an interesting debate and I think we can expect to see some battles between the big OTT and electronic players and automotive players for control.