This morning I suggest this interesting paper titled: “Comprehensive Experimental Analyses of Automotive Attack Surfaces“. In their second paper autosec.org group analyze most of the possible attack vectors available on “last generation” automobiles. The following image shows, very well, the amount of public interfaces in a modern cars.
Modern automobiles are pervasively computerized, and hence potentially vulnerable to attack. However, while previous research has shown that the internal networks within some modern cars are insecure, the associated threat model — requiring prior physical access — has justifiably been viewed as unrealistic. Thus, it remains an open question if automobiles can also be susceptible to remote compromise. Our work seeks to put this question to rest by systematically analyzing the external attack surface of a modern automobile. We discover that remote exploitation is feasible via a broad range of attack vectors (including mechanics tools, CD players, Bluetooth and cellular radio), and further, that wireless communications channels allow long distance vehicle control, location tracking, in-cabin audio exfiltration and theft. Finally, we discuss the structural characteristics of the automotive ecosystem that give rise to such problems and highlight the practical challenges in mitigating them.
While past researches, included the autosec.org first paper, focused on specific car vulnerabilities this paper tries to abstract vulnerabilities describing high level threats. In particular this research describes four vulnerability class such as: Direct Physical, Indirect Physical, short-range wireless and long-range wireless.
I like this paper, very easy to read and very entertaining. Nothing really innovative (at least from my persona point of view) but interesting to see how common “computer security” attacks could be applied to automobiles. I really hope they don’t want to build their own testing methodology, I will hate to see another personal-and-specific security testing methodology. I rather hope they will learn/adopt common security testing methodologies.