Intel takes action against automotive cybersecurity risks

Posted on 22 Sep 2015 by Cobey Bartels

Intel has established the Automotive Security Review Board following increasing cybersecurity concerns, stemming from the Fiat Chrysler Automobile (FCA) recall of over one million Jeep Cherokees exposed to remote hacking.

The formation of the Automotive Security Review Board (ASRB) follows the heavily publicised Uconnect vulnerability in the Jeep Cherokee that prompted a 1.4 million-vehicle recall, and the further 7,810 Jeep Renegades recalled over a similar flaw.

The ASRB is set to innovate the automotive cybersecurity industry and reduce risks associated with the connected vehicle technology.

The board will be made up of “top talents with specific expertise on cyber-physical security”, according to Intel’s official statement.

The ASRB plans to continually test and audit vehicles based on security, allowing the development of best practices and cybersecurity innovations to drive the industry forward and benefit consumers with improved safety. Intel will allow the ASRB to perform research on its automotive advanced development platforms.

Intel has published the first version of its automotive cybersecurity best practices white paper, ‘Automotive Security Best Practices: Recommendations for Security and Privacy in the Era of the Next-Generation Car’, establishing risks associated with connected vehicles and making recommendations aimed at addressing security concerns. The company is set to update the white paper based on the ASRB developments and will publish findings publically, according to their statement.

In the introduction of the first white paper it is made clear that cybersecurity is a conern faced by all involved, from manufacturers through to consumers.

“Computer attacks are now a clear and present danger for car users, dealers, manufacturers, and suppliers,” the white paper states.

Gartner warning

Information technology research and advisory firm Gartner has predicated a rapid increase in the number of connected vehicles, providing a compelling reason for the establishment of the ASRB.

“By 2020, there will be a quarter billion connected vehicles on the road, enabling new in-vehicle services and automated driving capabilities.

“During the next five years, the proportion of new vehicles equipped with this capability will increase dramatically, making connected cars a major element of the Internet of Things (IoT),” reported Gartner in a press release.

Senior vice president and general manager of Intel Security Chris Young insists that efforts against cyber attacks must be improved.

“We can, and must, raise the bar against cyberattacks in automobiles.

“With the help of the ASRB, Intel can establish security best practices and encourage that cybersecurity is an essential ingredient in the design of every connected car.

“Few things are more personal than our safety while on the road, making the ASRB the right idea at the right time,” said Young in Intel’s statement.

Similar to ‘pwn2own’ contests elsewhere allowing hackers to win the hardware they are able to penetrate, Intel is offering a new car as an award to the board member who makes the most significant contribution to automotive cybersecurity using its hardware platform.

Intel is holding the first review board meeting in October, inviting security professionals to sign up through the company’s website if they are looking to attend.