Tesla Will Open Up Vehicle Security Software To All Automakers

AUG 13 2018 BY DOMENICK YONEY 12

But do other automakers care?

Back in 2014, the CEO of Tesla, Elon Musk, famously opened up the electric automaker’s trove of patents for other companies to use if they wanted. Now, he’s planning to open source its vehicle security software.

The enigmatic executive made the announcement via Twitter (embedded below), his preferred way to communicate shorter messages to the outside world. At the time, he was attending Defcon 26, an annual convention for hackers that first started in the early Nineties. In the same tweet, he also thanked the conference for helping both Tesla and his space venturing company, SpaceX, more secure. It is not known exactly what role the conference had in doing that, but typically, attendees target systems to tackle and exploit any possible venerabilities, thereby alerting the owners of those systems to potential weaknesses that they can then address.

It’s unclear whether other automakers will take him up on the offer. When the company’s patents were opened up, there was a lot of skepticism voiced about the value of the move. And indeed, the “Big 3” didn’t seem to have much immediate interest. Months later, though, Musk would say in an interview with USA Today that, “We have had a number of inquiries from other car companies and we’ve told them to go ahead and use them.

With autonomous vehicles seemingly on the way, it would be reassuring if automakers came together to address security issues. If vehicles from one company are compromised, it may well affect the public’s willingness to trust autonomous vehicles in general. Certainly, the gesture from Tesla is appreciated, but the issue will require more, we believe, than just one company making its source code available to the others. Perhaps coming together for this common cause might also lead to cooperation in other mutually beneficial areas as well.

Source: Twitter

Categories: Tesla

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12 Comments on "Tesla Will Open Up Vehicle Security Software To All Automakers"

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CDAVIS

Tesla making these types of use offers to the traditional car makers helps Tesla defend itself when those car makers years from now claim Tesla has gained an unfair competitive advantage.

Edinho

This too! I did not even think about it, but you’re right.

Mark.ca

What? “unfair competitive advantage”? It’s like starting to run an hour after the marathon started and then claim it’s not fair that you are the last one.

CDAVIS

@Mark.ca said: “…It’s like starting to run an hour after the marathon started and then claim it’s not fair that you are the last one.”
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Yup… but that won’t stop the traditionals claiming Tesls has gained an unfair advantage… it has already started:

Example:
“Because they’re [Tesla] cutting out the dealerships and selling direct distribution, what could happen is they would have lower expense structure,” said Jason Vianese, general manager at Richard Chevrolet in Cheshire… Vianese’s concerns don’t stem from fear of competition— he sees the Chevrolet Bolt EV as a top competitor against Tesla. “I’m not concerned at all about [the Model 3], I just want to compete on the same playing field, that’s all,” Vianese said…” source:
http://www.courant.com/politics/hc-tesla-reconvene-fight-direct-sales-car-dealerships-20170222-story,amp.html

Mark Baum

There isn’t a single Tesla patent (they only filed around 200) that they filed under the Open Source license. Not a single one! When do you guys finally understand what Open Source means? This is pure PR and as a longtime InsideEVs reader I expect you guys to do your job and do some research before posting such a misleading article.

Seven Electrics

Funding secured.

CDAVIS

Seven Electics said: “Funding Secured”
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Yes, we already know… thanks.

CDAVIS

@Mark Baum said: “There isn’t a single Tesla patent (they only filed around 200) that they filed under the Open Source license…. expect you [INSIDEEVs] guys to do your job and do some research before posting such a misleading article.“
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@Mark Baum – You are conflating Tesla “Opening Up” patents with Tesla “Open Sourcing” Tesla security software.

The above article does not say “open source patents”.

Tesla on it’s legal page provide a clear list and use terms of all its patents made available to other EV car makers:

“Patent Pledge… Tesla irrevocably pledges that it will not initiate a lawsuit against any party for infringing a Tesla Patent through activity relating to electric vehicles or related equipment for so long as such party is acting in good faith. Key terms of the Pledge are explained below…”: source

https://www.tesla.com/about/legal

antrik

Do *you* understand what Open Source means? Talking about filing patents “under the Open Source license” sounds like you are confused both about software licensing and about patents…

F teo

When Tesla is using custom hardware like the VCfront module, then even a complete software stack is of limited use. For the AP module they are using Nvidia Drive PX but soon FSD will use their own board/chips which again negate any gains to open sourcing.
However, if Tesla has a special group of people formed under the industry to develop the security architecture and testing methods and standards, that would be a great thing!.

Nono13

Great PR stunt. Nothing more IMHO.

TM3x2 Chris

Great comment. Nothing less IMHO.