While all these hacks were set up in advance by researchers who had access to the vehicle and plenty of time to prepare the attack—and there hasn’t been a single documented case of a nefarious real-world car hack—Carlin added that “you can easily see how the auto industry makes for a valuable target for hackers of all stripes.”While the auto industry has stepped up its cyber-security efforts by hiring security experts, offering “bug” bounties, and forming an Information Sharing and Analysis Center, it’s a tall task to design a completely hack-proof vehicle. Carlin explained he was not in Detroit to cause panic and fear, but to meet with auto industry executives and law enforcement officials to encourage the industry to be proactive about security risks associated with connected cars before a catastrophic hack happens.

“It’s better in every respect to think of the risk on the front end,” Carlin said. “We can’t play catch up. Assume the worst.”

Originally published by PCMag.com