CLEMSON, S.C. (WSPA) — Clemson University has been chosen to protect the country’s transportation system.
The university has received a $20 million grant from the Department of Transportation to create the National Center for Transportation Cybersecurity and Resiliency (TraCR).
The goal of the center will be to develop software and hardware to protect vehicles and transportation systems from cyber attacks.
“We don’t know how the hackers will think in the future,” said Dr. Mashrur “Ronnie” Chowdhury, the Director of TraCR. “We want to make sure any threats that are coming in the future — five, 10 or two years from now — that we are ready.”
Chowdhury and his team of graduate students have been working on this technology for the last six years.
“We are developing an engineered system that can be used by everyone in our country,” said Chowdhury.
The team has begun testing the technology in self-driving vehicles. They said it will prevent hackers from getting into the vehicle’s computer system and potentially causing the vehicle to crash.
“Once we have our artificial intelligence (AI) algorithm in the autonomous vehicle, you will not be able to break it,” explained Chowdhury. “No matter how powerful your attack is, you will not be able to do anything to our smart AI.”
The team hopes the technology can also be used to protect other means of transportation, such as buses, as well as key components of transportation, such as traffic signals.
Chowdhury said he hopes the technology is completely developed in five years.