Driverless Vehicles and LIDAR: Evaluation of Possible Security Threats on the Open Road 2015-01-0219
Starting January 2015 the government of the United Kingdom will allow driverless cars on public roads. From a first glance this can and should be seen as a great step towards the adoption of autonomous vehicles. Yet as any new technology driverless vehicles carry with them many new risks and disadvantages that need to be understood and protected against in order for the introduction of said systems into the market place to be a long lasting and fruitful one.
The present work will look at the possible safety and security risks posed by the use of Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) systems on the open road, motivated by the fact that many projected autonomous vehicle concept systems rely on them for object detection and avoidance. Specifically the use or abuse of infrared laser technology will be analyzed for the potential risks it could pose in case of it were used to perpetrate an attack on the public by disguising an offensive system within the shell of a LiDAR-guided vehicular platform.
The shape and possible mechanisms of such a threat will be elaborated upon and recommendations for their prevention will be proposed.