Protecting Drivers & Businesses from Hackers

Cybersecurity rates as a top concern these days, from teens to grandparents alike, as highlighted by the recent White House summit at Stanford University. But most people are just waking up to the fact that cyber threats also extend to our offline lives. Or, more accurately, that the growing Internet of Things blurs the boundaries between our online and offline lives. One of the most pressing security gaps is in our cars and trucks.

As vehicles are increasingly connected to the Internet, and equipped with sensors, radar, and cameras, more entry points become available for hackers to gain control remotely. Attackers could intercept, manipulate or exploit telematics data, or disrupt telematics communication for purposes of theft and other fraud. Hackers could even seize control of critical vehicle systems and functions, such as braking and steering, as demonstrated in a 2013 study funded by DARPA, an agency of the US Department of Defense. (See the Forbes video here.)

Last month, US Senator Ed Markey (D-Mass.) released a report that calls for new standards to plug such security and privacy gaps. The study concludes that “there is a clear lack of appropriate security measures to protect drivers against hackers who may be able to take control of a vehicle or against those who may wish to collect and use personal driver information.” (For the full report, click here.)

As a telematics leader, GreenRoad recognized such risks long before they became a hot political issue. In the absence of official telematics security standards, GreenRoad takes the approach that more is best and continues to operate under the principle that security is paramount.

Today’s vehicles contain numerous, separate electronic control units (ECUs), connected through a controller area network (CAN) or other network. GreenRoad proactively secures its system through a combined strategy of device isolation prohibiting writing to the CAN bus and restricted connectivity.

As technology races ahead, GreenRoad will continue to be at the forefront in keeping your fleet drivers, vehicles and data safe.