Commerce Dept assessing privacy, cyber risks of Chinese auto tech

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  • The Department of Commerce is investigating the potential national security risks of connected vehicles and associated technologies sourced from China.
  • The concern is centered around data privacy and cybersecurity vulnerabilities in vehicles that could be exploited by foreign adversaries.

In an effort to safeguard national security, the Department of Commerce is looking into the privacy and cyber risks associated with Chinese-sourced connected vehicle equipment. The investigation aims to address potential concerns before these technologies become widespread in the U.S. While the move does not currently involve bans on specific products, it could lead to restrictions on transactions involving Chinese equipment. The concern lies in the significant amount of data that modern vehicles collect and the potential for these vehicles to be remotely accessed or disabled by malicious actors.

President Joe Biden highlighted the risks posed by connected vehicles from China, emphasizing the need for actions to protect national security. Concerns extend beyond data privacy to potential cyberattacks and espionage risks. The investigation leverages authority granted by previous executive orders to address potential threats posed by connected vehicles from foreign adversaries, specifically China.

The notice comes following recent executive orders and measures aimed at safeguarding sensitive data and restricting transactions involving certain types of datasets from countries of concern. With the rapid advancement of technology in vehicles, vulnerabilities have been identified that could allow hackers to manipulate critical systems and potentially pose security risks to consumers. The Commerce Department’s investigation seeks to delve into the intricacies of connected vehicles, exploring relationships between manufacturers and suppliers, potential risks, and potential mitigations to address these challenges.

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