(STUDY FINDS) -- EAST LANSING, Mich. — More and more smart cars are taking to the road each year, and it’s no wonder why. These advanced vehicles equipped with high-tech technology improve users’ driving experience considerably, from both a convenience and practicality standpoint. Of course, just like any number of other modern devices that improve our lives, like smartphones and home assistants, these newer cars also open up the possibility of cyber attacks from hackers or other individuals with malicious intentions. A new study out of Michigan State University applied criminal justice theory to the newly emerging smart car industry, and found a number of troubling security oversights — including some that could lead to potentially deadly consequences.
Overall, the study’s authors identified two main problem areas: the possibility that users’ personal data could be compromised via a smart car hack; and perhaps even more alarmingly, the potential for hackers to take control of and change a smart car’s safety features, consequently endangering all passengers.
“Automotive cybersecurity is an area we don’t understand well in the social sciences. While there are groups of computer scientists and engineers digging into some of the issues, the social aspects are extremely relevant and under-examined,” explains lead author Thomas Holt, professor of criminal justice at MSU, in a release. “As the technology gets greater market share, it’s critical to get ahead of the curve before there are issues we can’t rein in.”
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