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Enhancing Cybersecurity in Public Transportation

Cybersecurity is a significant concern in all industries. Given the rapid adoption of technology in the area of automated and connected vehicles, transportation infrastructure is a particularly attractive target. The concern is so great that in 2013 the Florida Legislature requested the formation of the Florida Center for Cybersecurity , which named transportation as a key focus area. Public transportation vehicles (e.g., buses) are perhaps the most-exposed component of transit infrastructure—they carry a large number of individuals that are continuously entering and exiting and contain a constantly increasing number of different technologies that can be leveraged as potential attack vectors. Technology on-board a typical transit vehicle includes publicly accessible Wi-Fi networks, traffic signal preemption equipment that can be used to change traffic light timings, wireless fare payment technology interfaces (Near Field Communication, Bluetooth, and barcode scanning), automatic passenger counting systems, and connectivity with dispatch/command and control systems via a wireless modem or dedicated short range communications (DSRC). This project will identify and mitigate transit cybersecurity liabilities and facilitate ongoing cybersecurity information exchange among Florida transit agencies, their vendors, and cybersecurity researchers. This project will include a literature review of transit technologies and their potential vulnerabilities, a survey for transit agency staff for deployed technologies in Florida, organization of a Transit Cybersecurity Working Group, and workshops aimed to bring together the Florida Center for Cybersecurity, students of cybersecurity, cybersecurity researchers, and Florida transit agencies, to consider and evaluate the security of transit technologies.

Partners: City of Tampa, Florida Department of Transportation University of South Florida

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