Connected car development poses security risks if regulation lags, Chinese official says

06 September 2021 05:29 by Xu Yuan

Connected Cars

The rapid development of the smart-vehicle industry could cause significant security risks if regulation fails to catch up, a top Chinese official said.

Xin Guobin, vice minister of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, highlighted cybersecurity and data security among the top challenges in pushing the industry forward, at a conference* on the automobile sector.

“As technology advances, the development of intelligent and Internet-connected vehicles may result in data-security issues such as unauthorized collection and processing of personal information and important data,” the official said.

“If regulation fails to keep up, security issues including cyberattacks and Internet breaches may result in significant security risks,” according to a transcript of Xin’s speech.

Important data refers to data of significant importance to the state, such as data concerning national security and economic development, and will be defined by regulators in specific sectors.

Xin said the ministry, which regulates the auto sector, is working on security technical standards for clean-energy cars and will step up the scrutiny of product consistency.

The regulator will order companies to conduct internal inspections in areas such as data security, cybersecurity, and software updates, as well as require registration of software updates and formulate market-entry requirements for Internet-connected vehicles.

Xin pointed out that the sector also faced other challenges such as scattered resources input, high production costs, a deficiency in battery recycling, as well as insufficient supply of auto chips and parts.

The recent shortage of auto chips has also prompted the ministry to relax rules for registration of production changes and shorten the review of requests to change auto parts or suppliers, according to a statement on Friday.

According to the official, China’s clean-energy and connected cars continue to develop rapidly and the industry has achieved new breakthroughs in batteries. The ministry is planning to start pilot projects in cities to use electric vehicles for all public transport.

*International Forum (TEDA) on Chinese Automotive Industry Development, Tianjin, Sept. 3-5

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