Upstream & Thales Discuss Cybersecurity for Smart Mobility


– Hi Jean-Marie, and welcome to Upstream’s Tech Talk series. I’m Fay from Upstream Security


– Hi, Fay.


– and we offer the first… Hi. We offer the first cloud-based cybersecurity solution that’s purpose built for connected vehicles and smart mobility services, to protect them from cyber threats and misuse through the use of data. I’ll be the host of this Upstream Tech Talk. And I’ll hand it over to you for a quick introduction.


– Yes, thank you very much for your invitation. So, I’m very happy to be with you today for this talk. My name is Jean-Marie Letort. I’m based in Paris. I’m working for Thales, which is a global industrial player in aerospace defense and I’m leading the cybersecurity services division for the group, globally speaking. So to make it very short, we have two types of activities, on one side I’m leading the audit and consulting around cyber. And on the other side, the second division I’m leading, is the detection activities. So it’s all about cyber detection.


– So, you had mentioned that your interlaces within the defense and aviation, there’s a real transfer. Do you guys even work with outer space? What are some of those cybersecurity lessons that you have learned from those arenas that can be applied to the connected and autonomous vehicle space?


– Yeah, it’s a very good point. We are, I think we are number one or number two globally speaking in terms of embedded technology especially in the avionics, it could be defense or civil aviations where our clients are the airlines. For example, it’s been 15 years since we have been waiting while working in this ecosystem. And our job is to secure, to develop these systems, this technology, and secure them. And what we have learned from the avionics industry we have to translate this knowledge to the automotive sectors since now, 10 years. And we are working very closely with the OEM and Tier One where we provide our expertise and solutions like Upstream also does, choose the OEM to secure the connected vehicles and in the next future, the autonomous vehicles. So it’s a- Common points and maybe technology in a plane or in a car but the same. Connected technology, but the same. So the more connected, the more vulnerable then you need cyber.


– No, what does that look like? When you talk about autonomous vehicles? ‘Cause that’s something new and something very exciting. I think for this world that we know with the ASIS transformation, I’ll be more connected and eventually, the autonomous vehicle. What does that look like? What does that transformation look like? What does autonomy mean for the ecosystem? Whether that is within the realm of cybersecurity, whether that’s within the realm of general security, what does that look like in your perspective?


– As you know there is different levels of autonomy. From level one to level five, level five being the full autonomy vehicle, which might take a long time to come. So maybe level five will not come so easily but level three or four should be okay. To make it happen, the vehicle can be a car, but it can be a train, it can be a drone, whatever, should be intelligent, should have the ability to process data to take the right decisions on its own, to drive, to break, to turn and so on. And also to be able to behave safely in the environment. So there is connection with the other vehicle and connection with the environment. So, a lot of technology, a lot of calculation and process within the car, a lot of connection. So the car connected to the internet, to the cloud, to the other cars and to make it simple the more you connect a vehicle, the more intelligent it is but also the more potential vulnerability to cyber attacks you create. So, to make it happen, you need for sure to invest in this technology and to deploy the right cybersecurity requirements or solutions.


– Now, I wanna touch back to something you had mentioned earlier and maybe go in a little bit more deep into it, are obviously a connected plane is different than a connected car and a connected space shuttle or elements within outer space are very different. Same thing when it comes to elements of defense. So what are some things that are similar within that cybersecurity or securing those connected arenas versus automotive and the vehicle space. What are some differences and then, what are some similarities? Maybe if you wanna touch up on one-on-one.


– There is a similarity in the way you have to partner with the OEM and the way you provide security. So usually we do two things. First step, is to do audit with the OEM, to test the level of security of the, what they call the onboard technology. So we do linearity assessment, penetration testing and then we review always the architecture of the car with the OEM, to make sure that by design the architecture itself, of the car, is secure. So like this, you create a car autonomous and connected, which is secure, step one. And then step two, you have to be able to detect potential attacks. So it’s the detection phase, which is what Thales is doing, which Upstream also is providing a solution. So, you know it. It’s like have the ability to detect potential attacks on all the fleets of vehicle. So it’s another expertise where you have to be able to do real-time detection of potential threats but could target the connected vehicles. So we do security operations center. We operate, we run this secret operation center to provide a certain level of detection to our client, which are the OEM.


– I think that leads directly to another question which is, “How do you work with partners like Upstream?” You had mentioned, we both have the same focus of the ability to detect and recognizing the need to detect cyber attacks before they happen, both new and emerging threats that we don’t even know about yet. So, how do you work with partners like Upstream to facilitate that cybersecurity need and to help OEMs or other customers?


– Yeah. Thales is a global industrial company. It is a big company. We are 80,000 people and we have learned over the years that we need specialist, supertone specialists in certain area to complete our value proposition. Upstream for sure has been clearly identify and we are very happy to work with you because you provide a solution and a technology which is of real strong added value in the expertise of embedded technology and automotive. So for the vehicle such, the Upstream Solution is well-fitted. And on top of that, you have also a very good knowledge of the cyber threats targeting these technology and the automotive industry, which is what we call threat intelligence. So, I think we work with you and I think other OEM work with you because you have the ability to combine the very good knowledge of the threats and technical solutions based on big data which allow us to a point to leverage your technology, to be able to do the right detection solution for our clients. So, I think it’s a super precise, vertical market experience that you provide to your clients. And this is why we are happy to partner with players like you.


– And we’re happy to partner with you as well. I think this is coming to the closing of our time. So if there’s any last things that you wanna give to our audience, any last thoughts that you have, now’s the time.


– I think it’s a very challenging business but it’s also full of opportunities. I think we are only at the very beginning of all the potential that we will see in this domain, meaning autonomous and smart mobility. As we said, it can be cars but it can be trains, drones, planes, whatever. We will have to support our clients. They go into this digital transformation but we need to be there to secure this transformation. And I think Thales and Upstream are good players to partner together and to support the ecosystem.


– Great. Well, that’s a great way to end it and I wanna thank you so much for joining me today. And I look forward to partnering in the future.


– Pleasure. See you soon.

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