Renaissance Center, GM Headquarters, Detroit

Junfu Han/Detroit Free Press/TNS/Sipa USA

GM To Invite Hackers To Address Auto Security Concerns

August 03, 2018 - 6:25 pm

DETROIT (WCBS 880) -- General Motors has a plan to beef up auto security by hiring hackers.

As Jeff Gilbert of WWJ Newsradio 950 in Detroit explained to WCBS 880’s Steve Scott, the “white-hat” hackers will be coming to Detroit to look for vulnerabilities in GM’s systems.

“They’re actually going to bring them to Detroit, show them some of their systems and say, ‘Hey, try to break into this,’ and then they’re going to pay them if they find a fault, so it’s kind of interesting,” Gilbert said. “They’re calling it the Bug Bounty.”

Concerns about hacking are on the rise, particularly when it comes to the arrival of self-driving cars.

 “They’re very worried about that, especially as they get into automated vehicles – self-driving cars – because consumer trust is a big issue to make these things work, so GM’s president today said, ‘If there is just one bad incident, it could actually scuttle all the plans to develop automated cars, or at least delay them,’” Gilbert said.

Former U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff attended an auto conference on cybersecurity Friday along with GM President Dan Ammann and other notables. Chertoff noted that terrorists already often use vehicles as weapons, and autonomous vehicle technology could allow a terrorist to remotely control a vehicle.

“That’s probably good with their concern, because that means they can take preventative measures,” Gilbert said.