CES 2020 shows the world’s first car protected against quantum hacking

A new application for quantum computing could be just around the corner. During the 2020 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, ISARA Corporation, in collaboration with car developer Karma, presented the Karma Revero GT, a new car protected with quantum cryptography. According to cybersecurity experts, this allows the car to send and receive electronic data without the owner is worrying about this information being intercepted or collected using some quantum computing method.

ISARA Corporation is the world’s leading provider of quantum security solutions. Taking over two decades of cybersecurity experience, this company is a pioneer in protecting current IT systems against potential quantum computing threats. Moreover, Karma is a high-tech developer and creator of luxury electric vehicles based in California, US.

It is estimated that over the next decade quantum computing will be a reality, so cryptography as we know it could prove obsolete. While this is a remarkable advance, it also poses a security risk for today’s computer systems, including smart vehicles.

Because modern cars receive software updates frequently and communicate over the air, an equally efficient protection system as the next generation of computer systems and hacking methods is needed, as a Quantum computer could break traditional encryption algorithms in a matter of minutes, cybersecurity experts say.

“Data security must be a critical element in the development of a smart car,” says Scott Totzke, CEO and founder of ISARA. “Manufacturers should start thinking about migrating to more advanced technologies to meet current and near-future cybersecurity standards; the cars that are currently being developed will be launched to the market alongside of quantum computing becomes a reality,” Totzke added.

During the demonstration of the Karma Revero GT, a luxury electric sports car, the developers pointed out the use of a technology known as “hybrid encryption”, combining ECDH and Kyber algorithms to determine the encryption key, and Dilithium for the process authentication. All of these algorithms are already on the market as part of ISARA Radiate, a hack-proof toolkit using quantum computing (Quantum-safe).

This car also includes the iNAGO driving assistant, which helps automakers bring drivers unique services and content for each car. “A large amount of personal information circulates through this system, so it is vital to develop protections in line with technological advancement,” the ISARA CEO added.

A report from the International Institute of Cyber Security (IICS) mentions that while quantum computing is not widely applied, it has been around for nearly a decade for the encryption of interbank communications in Europe and the US. Currently the main constraint for the development of this technology is interoperability between different technology providers, although this will surely change in the future.