Road Safety with Self-Driving Cars and the Increasing Cyber Danger?

By: Vajratiya Vajrobol, International Center for AI and Cyber Security Research and Innovations (CCRI), Asia University, Taiwan,


Autonomous vehicles have long been seen as a sign of the future, offering more secure and effective modes of transportation. For these cars to negotiate our roadways, cutting-edge technologies like sensors, cameras, artificial intelligence, and connection are essential. Even while self-driving cars have a lot of potential benefits, there is one worrying development that has come to light: the growing cyber danger to these vehicles. This article will examine the relationship between cybersecurity and self-driving cars, as well as the hazards involved and the precautions that need to be taken to keep these vehicles safe.

The Prospects of Autonomous Vehicles

Autonomous vehicles, or self-driving cars, have the power to completely change the way we travel. It is anticipated that they will lessen traffic jams, decrease accidents, improve fuel economy, and offer mobility assistance to individuals with impairments or those who are unable to operate a vehicle. We are starting to see self-driving cars on our roads because of the significant investments made in autonomous technology by businesses like Tesla, Waymo, and General Motors.

The Autonomous Vehicle Cyber Threat

For operation, autonomous cars need a multitude of sensors, cameras, and sophisticated computer systems. Since these cars are effectively mobile computers, they are vulnerable to cyberattacks just like any other kind of computer. Cybersecurity issues with self-driving cars carry a number of serious hazards.

1. Hacking: There is a risk of hacking with autonomous cars. In the event that a cybercriminal takes over an autonomous vehicle, they run the risk of causing collisions, stealing personal information, or holding passengers hostage [1].

2. Data Privacy: A lot of information is gathered by self-driving cars, such as the position of the vehicle, its driving style, and even the conversations of its occupants. Cybercriminals may find this data to be a lucrative target [2].

3. Disruption of Services: Connectivity is a major requirement for autonomous cars. Transportation networks might be disrupted by a cyberattack on the technology that supports self-driving cars, leading to chaos on the roads [3].

4. Malware and Ransomware: Self-driving cars are susceptible to malware and ransomware infections, just like any other computer. The performance of the car could be impacted by malicious software, which could even lock it until a ransom is paid [4].

5. Counterfeit Signals: By manipulating GPS or sensor data, autonomous cars may be misled, resulting in dangerous driving situations [5].

6. Physical Attacks: Cyberattacks are not just online. Safety may potentially be compromised by physical assaults against autonomous cars, such as tampering with sensors or cameras [6].

Safeguarding Cybersecurity in Autonomous Vehicles

Several steps must be performed in order to overcome these cybersecurity issues and guarantee the security of self-driving cars:

1. Sturdy Software Security: To safeguard their cars against ransomware, malware, and hacking, automakers need to invest in strong cybersecurity solutions. It should be a common procedure to update and patch software on a regular basis [7].

2. Encryption and Data Protection: It’s critical to safeguard the information gathered by self-driving automobiles. Strong encryption and privacy protections need to be put in place [8].

3. Network Security: To avoid interruptions and attacks, it is essential to guarantee the security of the networks that link self-driving automobiles.

4. User Education : Information on data privacy and cybersecurity, as well as possible hazards and safety precautions related to self-driving cars, should be provided to passengers.

5. Government Regulations: To hold automakers responsible for security and safety, governments should set forth explicit guidelines and requirements for cybersecurity [9].

6. Collaboration: To find and fix vulnerabilities in autonomous vehicles, IT firms, automakers, and cybersecurity specialists must collaborate.

In summary

Although self-driving cars have the potential to revolutionise our transportation system, it is impossible to overlook the mounting cyber threat that these vehicles face. Prioritising cybersecurity measures is essential as autonomous vehicles become more commonplace on our roads in order to safeguard users, data, and the integrity of transportation networks. Governments, automakers, and cybersecurity specialists must work together to make sure that the promise of autonomous vehicles is achieved in a secure and safe manner.


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  4. Aurangzeb, S., Aleem, M., Khan, M. T., Anwar, H., & Siddique, M. S. (2023). Cybersecurity for autonomous vehicles against malware attacks in smart-cities. Cluster Computing, 1-16.
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  7. Maigida, A. M., Abdulhamid, S. I. M., Olalere, M., Alhassan, J. K., Chiroma, H., & Dada, E. G. (2019). Systematic literature review and metadata analysis of ransomware attacks and detection mechanisms. Journal of Reliable Intelligent Environments, 5, 67-89.
  8. Kosuru, V. S. R., & Venkitaraman, A. K. (2023). Advancements and challenges in achieving fully autonomous self-driving vehicles. World Journal of Advanced Research and Reviews, 18(1), 161-167.
  9. Taeihagh, A., & Lim, H. S. M. (2019). Governing autonomous vehicles: emerging responses for safety, liability, privacy, cybersecurity, and industry risks. Transport reviews, 39(1), 103-128.

Cite As:

Vajrobol V. (2023) Road Safety with Self-Driving Cars and the Increasing Cyber Danger?, Insights2Techinfo, pp.1

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