WASHINGTON, July 3, 2017 – Self-driving vehicles could reduce congestion, supplement public transit systems and help the elderly and disabled travel safely, said Jeffrey Massimilla, chief product cybersecurity officer of Product Cybersecurity for General Motors, at a Federal Trade Commission workshop on Wednesday.
Maureen Ohlhausen, acting chairman of the FTC, said that most new cars have connected features now, and some already use automated driving assistance. She said Uber in Pittsburgh has been using self-driving cars since September.
With the rise of connected vehicles, one important role for the FTC is to protect consumers’ personal information, she said.
“I would encourage Congress to consider data security and data breach notification legislation to strengthen the Commission’s already existing data security enforcement tools and to require companies to notify consumers when there’s a security breach,” Ohlhausen said.
Terry Shelton, acting executive director for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, said safety is the number one mission for the Department of Transportation and NHTSA. She said privacy is important for people to accept self-driving vehicles.
“If you’ve been around as long as I have, you know that seatbelts even were not accepted in the beginning,” Shelton said.
Shelton said vehicle technologies change lives, and self-driving vehicles are the next step. She said the NHTSA is updating its policies for the safe deployment of self-driving vehicles.
Massimilla said safety is the most important part of self-driving vehicles. He said there isn’t a question of if cyberattacks will happen but when.
Carrie Morton, who is responsible for the day-to-day operations of Mcity, a research center at the University of Michigan, said there needed to be detailed information of drivers to help insurers, such as braking habits and how often a driver will be in a rear-end collision. She also said it was important to understand the vulnerabilities that self-driving vehicles have, such as radar and camera issues.
Brian Markwalter, senior vice president of research and standards for the Consumer Technology Association, said most consumers are willing to have a tradeoff of rights and information to have a better service. He said driverless vehicles would help do away with drunk and drowsy driving.
Steven Bayless, vice president of public policy and regulatory affairs at the Intelligent Transportation Society of America, said vehicle to vehicle data will help drivers gain instant knowledge to make quick decisions. He said a signal could help drivers avoid accidents by knowing if another driver can’t break in time.
Stephen Pattison, vice president of public affairs for ARM, a microprocessor manufacturer, said that fewer people will own vehicles in the future and will just use vehicles. This could help overcome the fear of driver-owned vehicles containing personal information.
He said vehicles could also share data of where holes are in roads, and drivers will know where to avoid them. He said data shared by these vehicles could also help authorities manage traffic conditions. He said data that helps should be shared.
James Wilson, head of government relations and senior legal counsel of BlackBerry, said information from vehicles can help manufacturers, but insurance companies could refuse to help drivers depending on what data they received of the drivers.
Markwalter raised the topic of how self-driving vehicles will be updated or repaired without mechanics accidentally tinkering too much. Pattison said the software of the vehicles will have a short lifespan, and companies need to start looking at who is responsible for updating the software now.
(Photo by Casey Ryan)
Transportation Expert at CES 2022: Public-Private Partnerships Critical for Autonomous Vehicles
The bottom line reason for state interest in autonomous vehicles is safety, says Utah transportation official.
LAS VEGAS, January 5, 2022 – Public-private partnerships are the key to realizing the future of smart cities, a transportation expert said at the CES2022 technology trade show here on Wednesday.
To make cities and transportation truly “smart,” industry stakeholders must ensure that technologies enabling autonomous vehicles are fast and ubiquitously deployed.
Blaine Leonard, transportation technology engineer for Utah’s department of transportation, said at a session on “Smart Cities and Transportation” that public safety was his office’s top priority when working to connect autonomous vehicles to physical infrastructure.
“As a state agency, people often ask us why we are interested in automated vehicles, and the bottom line is safety,” he said.
“We lost 40,000 people to car crashes in 2020,” noting how 97% of all crashes are caused in part by human error. “As an agency, our focus is zero –– we want to get to zero fatalities.”
Leonard discussed how low latency and data speeds are critical to connecting vehicles to traffic systems. “From a state agency perspective, if we’re going to prevent crashes, we need that millisecond advantage.”
However, he stressed that harder-to-reach places may have to wait longer for these services. “That technology is important,” he said. “How quickly it’ll be here depends on where you are.”
While industry leaders push for faster deployment, Leonard says “It’ll take a number of years, maybe even a decade or two, to update all traffic systems” across the country.
Proposed Spectrum Reallocation Could Stifle Global Competitiveness, According to Automotive Experts
June 10, 2020 — The Federal Communications Commission’s proposal of redistributing spectrum on the 5.9 GigaHertz (GHz) band drew criticism from auto industry experts on a Federal Communications Bar Associations webinar Tuesday.
The agency proposed repurposing the lower 45 megahertz of the band for unlicensed operations to support broadband applications.
If enacted, the new rule would take a second look at spectrum allocation on the 5.9 GHz band and propose appropriate changes to ensure the spectrum is employed to its best use.
The 5.9 GHz band (5.850-5.925 GHz) has been reserved for use by dedicated short-range communications for the past two decades, which is a service of Intelligent Transportation Systems designed to enable vehicle-related communications. Unfortunately, DSRC technology has evolved slowly and has not been widely deployed.
Under the newly proposed rule, the FCC would continue to dedicate spectrum in the upper 30 megahertz of the 5.9 GHz band to meet current and future transportation and vehicle safety needs, while repurposing the lower 45 megahertz of the band for unlicensed operations, such as Wi-Fi.
Since the initial deployment of DSRC technology, C-V2X technology was created, allowing vehicles to communicate with each other, as well as infrastructure, bikers and pedestrians.
According to Matthew Hardy, program director for planning and policy for AASHTO, C-V2X technology far surpasses the capabilities presented by DSRC. Hardy argued the technology is crucial because it can prevent life-threatening crashes from occurring.
Sean Conway, a partner at Wilkinson Barker Knauer, LLP, contended that retaining all 75 MGHz is necessary for innovation, as 25 MGHz in the upper band would be utilized by 4G C-V2X, while another 50 MGHz in the lower band would be necessary to advance 5G C-V2X.
Angel Preston, director of safety at the Alliance for Automotive Innovation, argued that the actions proposed by the FCC could hinder global competitiveness, as the U.S. is decreasing C-V2X technology deployment while other countries are increasing construction.
Preston cited that 13 Chinese automotive makers committed to utilizing C-V2X technology in their models in coming years.
Opposition to the automotive experts was raised by Danielle Pineres, vice president of the Internet & Television Association, who argued that no more than 40 MGHz should be reserved for automotive safety, alluding to the fact that the 5.9 GHz band has been relatively unutilized for more than 20 years.
FCC inaction on the matter continues to stifle the progression of both broadband deployment and the automobile industry.
Broadband Roundup: Tesla Cars Ain’t Driverless, Suspicious Bernie Sanders Facebook Posts, ReConnect Awards
According to a Forbes article by Alan Ohnsman, U.S. safety investigators are calling for greater regulation of Teslas following the release of several investigative reports detailing several Tesla crashes due to the cars faulty autopilot mode.
In March 2018 in Mountain View, California, Walter Huang was playing a game on his phone as his Tesla Model X barreled down the highway. His car’s autopilot mode failed to detect a traffic barrier and crashed head-on into the concrete, killing Huang and trapping two other cars in a vortex of metal.
Investigators of the National Transportation Safety Board, an independent government body, have found fault with the company’s ’partially automated” label in light of the accidents. They have also proposed pro-active steps Tesla and the Transportation Department should take to save lives from faulty technology.
NTSB Chairman Robert Sumwalt said at the conclusion of a hearing on Tuesday in Washington: “We urge Tesla to work on improving its Autopilot technology and for NHTSA to fulfill its oversight responsibility to ensure that corrective action is taken when necessary. It’s time to stop enabling drivers in any partially automated vehicle to pretend that they have driverless cars. Because they don’t have driverless cars.”
Facebook investigating suspicious posts linked to Bernie Sanders supporters
Facebook is investigating accounts linked to suspicious posts that support Bernie Sanders, according to an article on The Wall Street Journal by Emily Glazer and Dustin Voz.
This news comes after U.S. Intelligence has confirmed that Russian operatives are using information to try to get Bernie Sanders nominated by the Democratic primary.
Facebook has yet to substantiate these claims.
“We investigate each credible claim we receive, just as we did in this instance when an outside researcher contacted us,” Facebook spokesman Andy Stone told the Journal. “To date, we have not been able to substantiate the researcher’s claims and we have not been notified by the intelligence community.”
USDA’s ReConnect grant program makes more awards
The Agriculture Department this week announced the awarding of $9.1 million, $3.3 million, and $2.2 million for broadband in rural communities in South Carolina, Montana, and Nevada, respectively.
The funds were dispersed via USDA’s ReConnect program attempting to shrink the digital divide between rural and non-rural communities.
“High-speed broadband e-Connectivity is critical to increasing access to health care and educational opportunities and strengthening economic development efforts in rural communities,” South Carolina Rural Development State Director Debbie Turbeville said.
“Under the leadership of President Trump and Agriculture Secretary Perdue, USDA is committed to being a strong partner to rural communities in deploying this critical infrastructure, because we know that when rural America thrives, all of America thrives.”
The Reconnect program was passed in 2018. It allocated $600 million to USDA to expand broadband infrastructure and services in rural America. Since last summer, the department has received applications requesting a total of $1.4 billion in funding.
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