Robots and autonomous systems in general are set to suffer the similar cybersecurity problems that computers have been facing for decades, namely malicious hacking. This is not only worrying for critical tasks such as those performed by autonomous vehicles or surgical or military robots but has privacy issued for household robots and devices which have the ability to compromise privacy and owner safety. How would you feel if you found that your daughter’s robot had been hacked and there were paedophiles watching every time she got undressed? Is it inevitable that these robots will be hacked or are there obvious solutions? …and if they’re hacked, should the manufacturers be liable for punitive damages for ignoring the obvious?
All next-gen Robots will be equipped with the ability to sense, process, and record the world around them and will be continuously gathering information. Compromise means that a three dimensional breach arises
– security issues regarding the operational side of the robot in terms of controllability and safety;
– operational issues regarding the functionality side of the robot in terms of its retained usefulness and whether it can still do the job it was designed for;
– privacy issues regarding the integrity and privacy of data, and communications.
The other question is the degree of risk and consequence
– Are surgical robots likely to be hacked? Organised crime could blackmail hospitals and individuals that they cannot rely upon the surgical robot being reliable and state actors could use these to provide surgical assassinations of key politicians and movers. The surgical robot is however much more able to be ring-fenced as it does not need to be online and there is a relatively easy solution to use encryption or blockchain to verify the integrity of the surgical control program.
– Are military robots
– Autonomous vehicles
– Home robotics – privacy, security, espionage, arson, bumping into cars,
work connected to communication networks allowing remote operations by specialists, what
would happen if these robots or their communications would be hijacked