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A fortress to defend the car from cyber attacks

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A fortress to defend the car from cyber attacks

Auto, the fortress is born to defend it from cyberattacks. That is, the Global Automotive Security Test Center of NTT Data which immediately comes into action with a first project for Marelli and C2A Security on the automated generation of security tests on car ECUs.

NTT Data is a leading Japanese multinational in the IT sector and now with this strategy it aims to offer its services in all the countries where the Group is present. We are talking about safety tests on connected cars to guarantee and protect the systems of these vehicles from cyber attacks. A complicated thing.

How many? We went to ask Marco Garelli, Head of Automotive of NTT Data Italia, for guidance: “I understand that you say it is complicated. And it is no coincidence that we have launched this initiative on a global level. Ntt data deals with infrastructures and by making the internet travel on these infrastructures we have strong expertise in terms of security. When we talk about connected cars, we review what we have experienced on our PCs for years”.


A fortress to defend the car from cyber attacks

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But maybe it’s even more complicated on the car? “Exactly – replies Garelli – because while the computer freezes, when traveling by car, everything can be more dangerous. That’s why we put in place an inviolable system on board the car. A service that NTT data will increasingly offer to builders: everything on board the aid is armored, unassailable. And then in the event of an attack we are able to offer great protection. A vehicle operation center that somehow works like an antivirus. He senses that someone is about to launch an attack and springs into action to protect everything. These are the two points we are working on”.

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However, the car now risks being more exposed due to Ota updates, which the car does by itself on the net. “Effectively – continues Garelli – what was born to improve car safety is now a potential danger. But – even if it shouldn’t be forgotten that remote updates can fix many bugs on the car – then the cybersecurity services that will be enabled with the car will be very similar to those on phones. So be sure.”

For now, all eyes are focused on the first project of the Global Automotive Security Test Center which, using EVSec, C2A’s flagship product, provides for the automatic generation of “System Level Fuzz Testing”, a technique aimed at finding bugs and vulnerabilities for the software of car control units. The project carried out with C2A Security and Marelli also concerns the anomaly detection of communication between the control units and is particularly innovative because the artificial intelligence algorithms are able to identify any attacks in progress and send alarms to a control center (Vehicle Security Operation Center) which can promptly intervene.

In short, the 139,000 professionals (of which 5,000 in Italy) and an international network of research and development centers in Tokyo, Palo Alto and Cosenza who work for NTT DATA have a great job to do.

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