U.S. Senator Edward J. Markey, who pointed in a 2014 report to major gaps in the security of connected features within cars, reintroduced legislation promising cybersecurity standards to address those challenges.
The Security and Privacy in Your Car (SPY Car) Act aims to not inform the driver of the cybersecurity and privacy status of the vehicle, and establish a system that moves beyond minimum cybersecurity standards. SPY Car directs the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Federal Trade Commission to set up appropriate standards to achieve this goal.
“Whether in their cars on the road or in aircraft in the sky, Americans should be protected from cyberattack and violations of their privacy,” said Senator Markey. “If hackers access the critical systems of a car or plane, disaster could ensue and our public safety could be compromised. We must ensure that as technologies change, our safety and privacy is maintained.”
The second act, introduced by U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal, involves the disclosure of cyberattacks on commercial aviation systems, and aims to identify vulnerabilities and address them to prevent significant losses. In-plane Wi-Fi vulnerabilities are also addressed by the Cybersecurity Standards for Aircraft to Improve Resilience (Cyber AIR) Act as the integration of new technologies in on-board systems might increase the attack surface.
Both senators have called on the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to come up with and enforce strong rules and regulations that address these concerns, to fend off future cyberattacks. The senators agree that both the auto and airline industries need to address hyper-connectivity and start thinking of ways to protect those systems from cyberattacks.
“This critical legislation will help protect the public against cybercriminals who exploit advances in technology like wireless-connected aircraft and self-driving cars,” said Senator Blumenthal. “As technology rapidly advances, we must ensure the auto and airline industries protect their systems from cybersecurity attacks. Security and safety cannot be sacrificed as we achieve the convenience and promise of wireless progress.”