PASTA (Portable Automotive Security Testbed with Adaptability) is the name of the new open source tool that Toyota has developed to combat reoccurring vulnerabilities in modern cars. The specifications of the tool will be released on GitHub and it will eventually be sold in Japan. Interestingly enough, the system comes in a 14 x 18.5-inch briefcase-size container weighing just 18 pounds. These is a huge step for the automotive industry in aiding against actor vectors. Researchers will now be able to understand how ECU’s (Engine Control Units) and the CAN (Controller Area Networks) operate and through this, they will be able to figure out what is vulnerable. “Simulating an actual vehicle through hardware is also required for assessing threats of cyber-attacks. We need not only to provide an adaptable platform for developing measures for existing cybersecurity but also simulate any function in actual vehicles using white-box ECUs,” said researchers. The system was presented at BLACKHAT EUROPE, but a definitive release date has not been set.
Although the tool was built to help researchers, Toyota making the decision to release the specifications on GitHub could allow for the tool to get into the wrong hands and be manipulated for malicious purposes. Users should keep up with Toyota or whichever car manufacturer they choose to find information on modern automotive vulnerabilities.