Carmakers and security experts should work more closely together to develop common IT standards and protect connected cars from hacker attacks, a senior T-Systems executive told the automotiveIT Congress in Berlin.

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T-Systems expert Chalvatzis says end-to-end security is key (Photo: Faces by Frank)

Michael Chalvatzis, a senior vice president at the consulting arm of Germany’s Telekom Group, said security is one of the biggest issues facing the connected car.

“Everything that’s connected will be attacked and everything that’s connected has to be secured,” he said. “When cars are connected, they will also be under attack.”

Chalvatzis said the number of cyber attacks and their level of agression are increasing. In March alone, the Telekom infrastructure fended off a record number of attacks, which, on a peak day, totaled 32 million.

“Thirty-two million attacks just on our infrastructure in one day means war,” the T-Systems executive warned.

It makes no sense for individual car brands to develop cyber security strategies on its own, Chalvatzis said. Instead, they should work together on a standardized approach. But even then, he warned, there will be no such thing as 100 percent security.

Industrial companies should be prepared to raise their spending on securing critical infrastructure, Chalvatzis said. And, when it comes to cars, end-to-end protection that covers everything from manufacturing to the car that ends up on the road should be secured.