U.S. Army, General Motors Collaborate to Improve Automotive Cybersecurity

Engineer exchange program focuses on vehicle penetration testing and risk analysis

DETROIT, MI (STL.News) The U.S. Army CCDC Ground Vehicle Systems Center (GVSC) and General Motors announced Monday a new cooperative research and development agreement (CRADA) which aims to strengthen GM’s and the Army’s automotive cybersecurity expertise over the next two years.

This marks the first automotive cybersecurity partnership of its kind between GVSC and a full-line vehicle manufacturer. Cybersecurity experts from both parties will share best practices, methodologies, tools and approaches focused on conducting penetration testing and cybersecurity risk analysis. In addition to improving cybersecurity processes, both organizations aim to share key learnings with the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) for the development of common standards.

Two Army engineers will embed with their counterparts at GM, while a GM expert is scheduled to co-locate with the Army’s Ground Vehicle Cybersecurity Team.

“Cybersecurity is an area of growing concern to the auto industry and one GM takes very seriously, which is why a partnership with the U.S. Army is crucially important,” said Kevin Tierney, GM chief product cybersecurity officer. “The insights we can glean from one another will only further benefit how we approach this important issue.”

GM’s multilayered approach to cybersecurity begins with ensuring security is designed into every product from concept through production. It continues with an agile development approach, thorough testing in complex, real-world situations and continuous monitoring to minimize risk.

Army efforts to bolster vehicle cybersecurity progress hand-in-hand with the military’s advances in autonomous driving technology and artificial intelligence. Through events like the Michigan Economic Development Corporation Cyber Truck Challenge, partnerships with industry and other government agencies, and organic efforts at automotive cyber-hardening, the Army takes a holistic approach to the growing discipline.

“Working with our collaborative partners in the automotive industry, like we’re doing here with General Motors, is a key component to quickly and efficiently develop our automotive cybersecurity capabilities,” said Jeff Langhout, director, GVSC. “The opportunities that our neighbors here in Southeast Michigan present for advanced technology development will pay dividends to our Soldiers now, and well into the future.”

The automotive cybersecurity work supporting this CRADA is expected to extend into 2021. GVSC is located on Detroit Arsenal, nearly adjacent to GM’s Global Technical Center in Warren, Michigan.

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