If you have been following our automotive industry blogs, you know we have been talking about the theme of “Accelerating Business in the Digital Age,” and our second annual Best Practices for Auto event that took place at the MGM Grand in Detroit Michigan.   We heard from customers and industry experts about what the industry is doing to bring awareness on a variety of topics.  One of the topics we heard about was Cybersecurity and its impact on the industry and its consumers.

During one of the tracks on this topic, we heard from Mark Weatherford, SVP & Chief Cybersecurity Strategist, First Deputy Under-Secretary for Cybersecurity, US Dept. of Homeland Security. He spoke about the subject of “Cybersecurity in the Automotive Industry” and how the Industrial Internet of Things (IIOT) is creating vast global opportunities.  However, security is absent from our planning and development process as well as “Everything” as a service (*aaS) poses new security concerns.  Chris Valasek, Security Chief, Advanced Technology Center from Uber discussed Automotive Security; “A Hacker’s Eye View” – the importance of not slowing innovation and the connectivity of the IIOT, but being deliberate in the efforts to secure the technology.  You remember Chris from his report, “Security experts hack into moving car and seize control” 1 and the report of how the internet can be used to gain control over a car, even shut the engine down!

We also had an informative industry panel comprised of manufacturing, software and legal experts. The title of the panel was “Connected, “Everything and Anywhere” a discussion on making security important and adaptive to the marketplace.  The focus points were on the vision of security for automotive, what the appropriate level of response to this threat business should have, and how standards can be a significant tool to help in this effort to keep our vehicles safe and our information secure.  The members of the panel were Otto Schell, Global SAP Architect, General Motors, Francis Cianfrocca, Founder & Chief Scientist, Bayhore Networks, Inc., and Sean Pike, Program Vice President Security Products, IDC.

It was agreed that increased focus on a growing threat to the industry and the consumer requires commitment to develop the appropriate safety protocols, and that if not, we will see a greater exposure to liability on the effects of a security incident.

If you want to learn more about the automotive industry, it’s digital trends and what SAP is doing to empower business to transform, don’t miss our third annual Best Practices for Auto in 2017.

1 “Security experts hack into moving car and seize control”, http://www.reuters.com/article/us-autos-hacking-idUSKCN0PV29X20150721

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