The new railway network upgrade in the United Kingdom has raised a lot of concerns, as far as its overall network security is concerned. It seems that over thirty million pounds will be invested in the upgrade, which can potentially lead to loss of control over the railway network, according to the estimates of security experts. Several types of malicious software can result in an increase of hazards, which can in turn deteriorate the quality standards and the safety level of the British railway as a whole.
With a cyber attack of a great extent, even train collisions can happen and this is certainly something that puts all the British citizens at risk, making them wonder as to whether or not the specific investment is worth it. The way in which trains have responded up to now is likely to change and this will lead to unprecedented casualties, damaging the credibility of the railway as a means of transportation. From City University, there have been complaints as to the possibility of such actions resulting in the lack of monitoring the trains.
From the Department of Transport in the UK, there has been the following comment on the recent concerns:
“We know that the risk [of a cyber-attack] will increase as we continue to roll out the digital technology across the network. We work closely with government, the security services, our partners and suppliers in the rail industry and external cyber security specialists to understand the threat to our systems and make sure we have the right controls in place. It is the smart malware [malicious software] that alters the way the train will respond. So, it will perhaps tell the system the train is slowing down when it is speeding up. Governments are not complacent, individual ministers know this is possible, and they are worried about it. Safeguards are going in, in secret, but it is always possible to get around them. We keep security arrangements under constant review to take account of the threat and any new challenges we face.”
It is worth stating that the same system planned to be installed in the United Kingdom will be expanded and it will stretch all over the European Union. The estimated year in which all the systems will be replaced with this upgrade is 2020; by this time, adequate improvements need to have taken place for the safety of all passengers.
Ali Qamar is an Internet security research enthusiast who enjoys “deep” research to dig out modern discoveries in the security industry. He is the founder and chief editor at Security Gladiators, an ultimate source for cyber security. To be frank and honest, Ali started working online as a freelancer and still shares the knowledge for a living. He is passionate about sharing the knowledge with people, and always try to give only the best. Follow Ali on Twitter @AliQammar57
(Security Affairs – railway network, train)