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Automakers address glaring dangers of wirelessly communicating cars

By Dieter Holger
Jun 29, 2015
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  1. [parsehtml]<p><img alt="automakers ford gm vehicle-to-vehicle vehicle-to-vehicle communication wireless cars" src="http://www.techspot.com/images2/news/bigimage/2015/06/2015-06-29-image-2.jpg" /></p> <p>Car accidents account for <a href="http://asirt.org/Initiatives/Informing-Road-Users/Road-Safety-Facts/Road-Crash-Statistics">1.3 million</a> deaths a year globally and 37,000 in the U.S. alone. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, new cars equipped with wireless vehicle-to-vehicle communication could help bring this number down by 2020 with automatic braking and steering to prevent collisions, but the threat of hacking poses a major challenge in getting there.</p> <p>Fortunately, automakers appear to be taking the issue seriously.</p> <p>Eight automakers, including GM and Ford, have teamed up to create secure vehicle-to-vehicle communication technology. The system will use public key infrastructure (PKI) encryption for the data messages exchanged by vehicles. The encrypted messages will transfer over a modified version of Wi-Fi, called dedicated short range communications.</p> <p>PKI automatically encodes and decodes digital messages while including a security credential -- the same method used in online shopping. Additionally, a third party, called a certificate authority, will validate that the message originated from a vehicle. The PKI system will be set up to protect hundreds of millions of vehicles from hacking.</p> <p>Connected cars using PKI encryption will broadcast data, including location and speed, &quot;10 times a second&quot; to cars with the same technology within 1,000 feet, said Ford&#39;s Michael Shulman to <a href="http://blogs.wsj.com/cio/2015/06/25/automakers-tackle-the-massive-security-challenges-of-connected-vehicles/">The Wall Street Journal</a>. Shulman added the security credentials contained in the PKI encryption will change irregularly a dozen times an hour. Shulman also assured the credentials don&#39;t contain any personal information.</p> <p>GM&#39;s 2017 Cadillac CTS will be one of the first consumer ready cars to include vehicle-to-vehicle commun<span style="line-height: 1.4;">ication. And the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates there&#39;ll eventually be 300 million connected cars on the road 25 years after they&#39;re mandated for safety, which will make the automakers proposed security system the largest of its kind.</span></p> <p>What are your thoughts? Do connected cars mean a safer future?</p><p><a rel='alternate' href='http://www.techspot.com/news/61154-automakers-address-glaring-dangers-wirelessly-communicating-cars.html' target='_blank'>Permalink to story.</a></p><p class='permalink'><a rel='alternate' href='http://www.techspot.com/news/61154-automakers-address-glaring-dangers-wirelessly-communicating-cars.html'>http://www.techspot.com/news/61154-automakers-address-glaring-dangers-wirelessly-communicating-cars.html</a></p>[/parsehtml]
     
  2. Adhmuz

    Adhmuz TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,653   +523

    For this system to be 100% effective it would need to be in 100% of the vehicles on the road, otherwise whats the point, as long as there are cars on the road without this system those cars will be invisible to these "communicating" cars and just cause more harm than good. "there'll eventually be 300 million connected cars on the road 25 years after they're mandated for safety" so that's 25 years after this is mandated, meaning if it's never mandated it won't change anything, just wasted R&D dollars, and where does it say when this is going to be mandated in? It doesn't.
     
  3. Peter Samson

    Peter Samson TS Rookie

    Critical mass is certainly needed, but studies suggest that the system will start to show real benefits when 20% to 25% of vehicles are equipped, but to achieve even this penetration level a critical success factor will be the availability of aftermarket V2V devices. V2V is part of a broader ecosystem which includes V2I (Vehicle to Infrastructure) such as traffic lights, road sensors etc and V2VRU (Vehicle to Vulnerable Road Users) which will include cyclists, construction crews and pedestrians by integrating wearable or cell phone devices. V2X is the umbrella term for all safety and convenience use cases.

    And yes, a mandate is needed and comforting that Anthony Foxx (Head of DOT) is pushing to accelerate the process.
     
  4. rvnwlfdroid

    rvnwlfdroid TS Booster Posts: 136   +23

    I'd feel bad for the car without the vehicle to vehicle communication if it were between two that did have it. Monkey in the middle just waiting to be smushed.
     
    BabyFaceLee likes this.
  5. Big brother is watching you. Now they want to directly contol your car (remember accidents are not murders or so they say).
     
  6. davislane1

    davislane1 TS Evangelist Posts: 3,556   +2,361

    "What are your thoughts? Do connected cars mean a safer future?"

    I think that this is still treating the symptom for a higher dollar price than solving the problem. If they truly wanted to make significant cuts to motor vehicle accident and fatality rates in this country, they would require the DMV to properly evaluate people before handing them a license. Knowing what a red light means and how to rotate a steering wheel doesn't qualify someone as an reasonably skilled driver. Yet, this seems to be the common threshold for receiving a Class C driver's license.

    If the DMV adopted a standard of skill and LE levied draconian punishments against people who fiddle with their phones behind the wheel, you'd see accident and fatality statistics plummet.
     
    Adhmuz likes this.
  7. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Evangelist Posts: 1,043   +273

    I doubt this. Cars with radar assisted cruise control can see your car if it is in front of you. IF, and I am making sure that it is a big IF, automakers are smart (though there is little evidence of that in the US), then cars that are capable of communicating with each other will also communicate data about other traffic on the road even when that other traffic does not have the ability to communicate.
     
  8. rogueh4

    rogueh4 TS Rookie Posts: 17

    Idk about smartcars or connecting cars through networks.

    Seems like an easily and attractive exploit route.
     

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