Cybersecurity, Autonomous cars and the Police

In the Meadow, we enjoy driving our vehicles. Sometimes on the weekends, we just get in the car and drive to the lake. This provides for a nice getaway. As we are as familiar with these, a new shift with the vehicles is occurring. These vehicles are moving towards being autonomous. The residents could tell the vehicle to “Go to Margie’s Market” and they could knit the whole way there and back. Most residents are suspect of this, until this is fully vetted.

One aspect of this not overly-analyzed has involved the police. With autonomous vehicles, in theory, the police could in very limited circumstances, take control of the autonomous drive vehicles. These would be exceptionally limited and may include, but not limited to the driver having a medical emergency, driver refusing to stop, vehicle endangering other people near the roadside, or a pedestrian crossing the street. This would drastically reduce the opportunity, liability, and potential loss of life with a high speed chase.

The residents may not quite appreciate Police Chief Jerry pulling someone over for driving by the grocery store at 48 mph, in the 45 mph zone. This however would only be used in much more dire circumstances.

The autonomous vehicles are on their way with varying capabilities initially, advancing to a fully autonomous vehicle. There are many known and unknown use cases with this, however, that have been and will be thought through.

Resources

Libicki, M.C. (2016, April 4). The police could be controlling your self-driving car. Retrieved from https://www.rand.org/blog/2016/04/the-police-could-be-controllering-your-self-driving-car.html

Merending, A. (2016, September 30). Autonomous vehicles will mean the end of traffic stops. Retrieved from https://www.wired.com/2016/09/autonomous-vehicles-will-mean-end-traffic-stops

Peterson, G. (2017, July 10). Envision an autonomous car chase scene. Retrieved from https://www.forbes.com/sites/georgepeterson1/2017/07/10/evision-an-autonomous-car-chase-scene/#70bd20873a1b

Posky, M. (2018, July 2). Should police have the ability to track and disable self-driving vehicles. Retrieved from https://www.thetruthaboutcars.como/2018/07/should-police-have-the-ability-to-track-and-disable-self-driving-vehicles/

Washington, R. (2016, September 29). Driverless cars are coming. What does that mean for policing? Retrieved from https://www.themarshallproject.org/2016/09/29/driverless-cars-are-coming-what-does-that-mean-for-policing

About the Author - Charles Parker, II has been working in the info sec field for over a decade, performing pen tests, vulnerability assessments, consulting with small- to medium-sized businesses to mitigate and remediate their issues, and preparing IT and info sec policies and procedures. Mr. Parker’s background includes work in the banking, medical, automotive, and staffing industries.

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