Connected Cars Could be a Threat to National Security, Group Claims
In a new report, the US nonprofit Consumer Watchdog (CW) warns that Internet-connected vehicles are a threat to national security due to the risk of coordinated hacking attacks that could target many vehicles at the same time.
Currently, connected cars make up 20% of all vehicles on American roads and this number will rise to 60% by 2022. In most cases, these connected cars can be controlled remotely via a smartphone app. This poses a massive risk because, as CW points out, “if you can control your car from any distance, so can a hacker.”
The report warns that the biggest risk comes from coordinated attacks that would target hundreds or even thousands of vehicles at the same time. The study mentions that “a plausible scenario” involves “a fleet-wide hack during rush hour in major US metropolitan areas,” which “could result in approximately 3,000 fatalities, the same death toll as the 9/11- attack.” According to CW, this threat needs to be seen in the context of cyber war between the US and countries like Russia.
Bob Gourley comments: After reviewing the base article and other reporting on this, we should point out that this is a very hypothetical scenario. Many in the community have reported this study as a big dose of FUD. There is probably some of that, but it is certainly ok to consider failure scenarios to ensure the worse never happens.