Cyber Security For Transport Sector

As technology advances more and more companies are taking advantage of the new possibilities that are opening up to them.

The Transport sector is one area that has already seen huge change as a result of new technology and it is again likely to see more and more advances in the near future. The possibilities are endless. We are already seeing very advanced trials of driverless vehicles which will have a huge impact, not only on the general public, but on Courier drivers and Haulage companies to name a few. There are still a number of questions that need to be answered by law makers and the tech companies before we see the full implementation of these vehicles.

Some transport companies are already using technology to track vehicles. This can help them to better organize routes, keep an eye on drivers and importantly protect their assets should they be stolen. Most of these vehicle trackers even allow the users to remotely switch the engine off and disable the vehicle. It’s not that long since this was all in the realms of science fiction.

Undoubtedly this technology has great benefits in terms of both profitability and, more importantly to me anyway, consumers getting their parcels and deliveries quicker. However, we need to make sure that this technology is implemented correctly and securely. For all the benefits there are also a number of potential pitfalls should things go wrong. Imagine a hacker was able to access the technology for their own purposes. Instead of my flat screen television be delivered to my door, they could potentially remotely disable the delivery truck and hold it to ransom before allowing it to continue on its journey. They may even be able to spoof the GPS of a vehicle to make it look like it is still travelling while emptying the back of it in to their own transport.

Although some of the above may sound like science fiction, in June last year it was reported that around 20 ships in the black sea discovered that their GPS position was reporting them being somewhere else. (https://www.newscientist.com/article/2143499-ships-fooled-in-gps-spoofing-attack-suggest-russian-cyberweapon/). Some of these attacks may still be very targeted and require real specialist skills but there is still a danger for users of this technology.

Firstly, if using this technology to track vehicles, make sure that the application has a strong password. Each user of the software needs to have their own strong password and not share it with anyone. This password protects not only your entry to the software but also your vehicles. Imagine an attacker got hold of that password. They could log on as one of your staff and do whatever they wanted with your fleet.

Secondly, make sure that all your systems are up to date. Applying all security updates to your operating systems, devices, and software is one of the most important ways of protecting yourself from cyber-attack.

If you want to talk to us more about security in Transport, please email [email protected]


Written on 14 March 2018

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