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BizReport : Trends & Ideas archives : July 28, 2016

Automakers playing catchup with cybersecurity

The auto industry has seen several recalls over the past year due to highly publicized hacks of vehicles' electronic systems. Research from KPMG reveals the impact such hacks have on consumers' perception of car brands.

by Helen Leggatt

Unlike most other electronic and connected devices, a breach in cybersecurity of a connected car can be life-threatening, so it's easy to see why KPMG's research found that more than 8 in ten (82%) consumers would think twice about buying a car from an automaker whose vehicles had been hacked.

The 2016 KPMG Consumer Loss Barometer (Automotive), which surveyed 449 vehicle owners, revealed that hacking of electronic systems, that could lead to a loss of control, is a real concern among 70%. Four in 10 (41%) of consumers said their number-one fear would be someone else taking control of their car, followed by 25% who were most worried about their financial information being stolen.


Not surprisingly, 79% said that if their own vehicle was hacked it would negatively impact their perception of the brand.

So, what are automakers doing to address such concerns? As well as surveying consumers, KPMG also surveyed 100 automotive senior cybersecurity execs. More than two-thirds (68%) said they have not invested capital funds in information security in the past 12 months despite 85% admitting their organizations had been breached in the past 2 years. Fifty-five percent said their company has no-one whose sole responsibility is information security.

"Automakers are playing catchup when it comes to cyber security," said Gary Silberg, KPMG's Automotive Sector leader. "But the threat is real, and the implications of a vehicle breach could be catastrophic for consumers and the automakers alike. Car companies need to take action now and make cyber security a strategic imperative to ensure they are doing everything possible to protect the drivers of their vehicles."

Check out KPMG's short video of their findings here.

Tags: automotive, research, security, technology

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