Hagens Berman Blog

Auto News: Cybersecurity in Self-driving Cars, UK Diesels

by Hagens Berman

Want more automotive news regarding recalls and other safety issues? Sign up here » 

Murky defence of diesel does Britain’s troubled motor industry no credit

The emissions scandal has damaged public trust in carmakers. It is time for them to be transparent and honest about the challenges they now face

The direct, deliberate cheating exposed in the Volkswagen scandal has led to prosecutions, massive corporate fines and jail sentences in the US, yet virtual inaction in Europe. The motor industry has still a long way to go to make the public believe its claims that new diesel engines are clean; indeed, independent tests have shown that even those manufactured to the latest Euro 6 standards continue to fall short. Instead of showing their determination to clean up, car bosses have preferred to finger-point at wood-burning stoves, and resist the mild nudges of the Treasury. Years of issuing lab test figures – whether for petrol consumption or NOx emissions – that bore little relation to the real world have earned the industry the public’s distrust. read more »

Cybersecurity in self-driving cars: University of Michigan releases threat identification tool

Instead of taking you home from work, your self-driving car delivers you to a desolate road, where it pulls off on the shoulder and stops.

You call your vehicle to pick you up from a store and instead you get a text message: Send $100 worth of Bitcoin to this account and it’ll be right over.

You buckle your seatbelt and set your destination to a doctor’s appointment, but your car won’t leave your driveway. It senses it’s been hacked and your home is its pre-programmed safe destination.

These three hypothetical scenarios—posited in a new white paper by University of Michigan researchers working with Mcity—illustrate the breadth of the cybersecurity challenges that must be overcome before autonomous and connected vehicles can be widely adopted. While every new generation of auto tech brings new security risks, the vulnerabilities that come along with advanced mobility are both unprecedented and under-studied, the paper states. read more »

Did Ford Install The Wrong Head Gaskets On The Focus RS?

For many months, Ford Focus RS owners around the globe have been freaking out about head gasket failures. The issue has led many to believe that Ford screwed up its gasket design, but in recent weeks Road And Track posed a different theory: the gasket wasn’t flawed, per se; it was just the wrong part. read more »