US government investigates Chinese cars for security risks

The American Government is looking into threats foreign-made connected cars could have on the country’s security, pointing to an “acute and persistent threat” from China.

The Department of Commerce has issued an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPRM) seeking public comment to inform the potential development of regulations to secure and safeguard the Information and Communications Technology and Services (ICTS) supply chain for connected vehicles.

“It doesn’t take a lot of imagination to think of how foreign government with access to connected vehicles could pose a serious risk to both our national security and the personal privacy of US citizens,” said US Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. “To assess these national security concerns, we are issuing an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to investigate the national security risks of connected vehicles, specifically PRC-manufactured technology in the vehicles. We need to understand the extent of the technology in these cars that can capture wide swaths of data or remotely disable or manipulate connected vehicles, so we are soliciting information to determine whether to take action under our ICTS authorities.”

“While we benefit greatly from the shift to a more digital and connected world, those connections create new avenues for espionage and sabotage. We must remain vigilant in identifying and securing those vulnerabilities, including potential vulnerabilities present in connected vehicles,” added Under Secretary for Industry and Security Alan Estevez. “Today’s action demonstrates that we are taking thoughtful, deliberative, proactive steps to address concerns that connected vehicles may present for U.S. national security.”

The ANPRM explains how the incorporation of foreign adversary ICTS in CVs can create risks, for example, by offering a direct entry point to sensitive US technology and data or by bypassing measures intended to protect people’s. safety and security. The Commerce Department says in such cases, “ICTS provided by persons or entities owned, controlled, or subject to the jurisdiction or direction of a foreign adversary may pose undue risks to critical infrastructure in the United States and unacceptable risks to national security”. It adds that the People’s Republic of China “presents a particularly acute and persistent threat to the US ICTS supply chain related to CVs”.

In a statement it adds that the ANPRM “demonstrates the Biden-Harris Administration’s proactive efforts to address the potential national security risks associated with the ICTS integral to CVs and is a significant step in advancing the ICTS mission”.

In this ANPRM, the Department seeks feedback on a number of issues, including: definitions;, how potential classes of ICTS transactions integral to CVs may present undue or unacceptable risks to US national security; implementation mechanisms to address these risks through potential prohibitions or, where feasible, mitigation measures; and whether to create a process for the public to request approval to engage in an otherwise prohibited transaction by demonstrating that the risk to US national security is sufficiently mitigated in the context of a particular transaction.

(Picture – TTF)


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