Government awards funding to automotive cyber security consortium

The government has green lighted funding for a consortium to look into cyber security solutions for the automotive industry. Basically, to research security features for the self driving and connected car industry.

The 5*StarS consortium includes automotive accessory heavyweights like HORIBA MIRA, Ricardo, Roke, Thatcham Research and Axillium Research. Innovate UK, the Government's innovation agency, will be providing the funding. According to the Consortium, the funding is to go towards: ' [The consortium will] research and develop an innovative assurance methodology to assure that connected autonomous vehicles components and systems have been designed and tested to the relevant cyber security standards throughout their whole lifecycle.'

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As the saying goes: accepting that there is a problem is half the job, the fact that the consortium has won funding shows that the government understands that there is a real risk associated with the IoT devices sector. And with research into self driving cars and connected cars picking up pace, it can only help to increase consumer confidence.

'The race for developing connected and autonomous vehicles is accelerating and as a Government we are determined to build on our strengths and ensure the UK is at the forefront of this revolution.

'We have an excellent record in innovation in the UK and through our Industrial Strategy, we will build on our strengths so the UK auto sector remains world-leading. That is why we have announced support today for 5*StarS as schemes like these will be key to turning research and development into anchoring future production,' said Business and Energy Secretary Greg Clark.

The ‘Automotive Cyber Security through Assurance’ project will aim to develop a 5 star type consumer rating framework, analogous to existing EuroNCAP type ratings for vehicle safety.

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Peter Shaw, chief executive at Thatcham Research, said:  'Car security, and specifically cyber security, is one of the top concerns of UK insurers. We are increasingly seeing more connected vehicles launched every month, whether that is loaded with a new app, or the ability to connect with the Cloud to access data. Wherever there is a digital element in the car, it is vulnerable to attack. Consumers and insurers need to know what potential risk this connectivity has. The 5*StarS system will provide this, as well as drive car manufacturers to continually strive to improve car security.'
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