Recent research announced by Thales eSecurity reveals that a significant percentage of UK consumers have security concerns associated with connected cars and other internet/Wi-Fi enabled devices.
1000 consumers in the UK and US were surveyed and 60% of respondents said they are concerned about the security risks of connected devices and the potential for them to be hacked. When purchasing a connected vehicle 40% claimed data security features would be the most important thing to consider.
The findings also showed that over 50% now own at least one connected device of some sort, from fitness trackers and smartwatches to vehicles.
Breakthroughs in technology mean that connected cars are favouring digital keyless entry systems over physical keys. CCTV footage from West Midlands Police recently displayed the vulnerability of a keyless entry system with two men managing to steal a car by relaying the signal from a keyless fob inside the house. West Midlands Police are encouraging owners to use additional security measures such as a steering wheel lock.
Concerns over the security of connected cars is bound to impact dealership sales. Retailers should take this research into consideration and ensure customers understand the features, so they can make informed decisions when purchasing a new car. The connectivity features and any security measures should be explained on a retailer’s website alongside the vehicle details and they should also be discussed during sales meetings with customers. Sales people need to understand and be able to explain and demonstrate the features.
In order to feel confident in purchasing a connected car, customers also need to be educated on how they can reduce the risks and ensure their vehicle is safe. For example, they should be aware of how virtual keys should be stored to reduce the risk of vehicle theft.
The research also showed that 92% of respondents felt the government should implement stricter data security regulations for connected cars. Connected cars are currently a hot topic in the automotive industry and whilst the new technology is exciting it does raise concerns which need to be addressed.