The Volkswagen emissions scandal has rocked the company and cost its CEO his job, but the implications of the company falsifying data to past regulators’ test has serious implications for the Internet of Things.
As the Los Angeles Times explains, Volkswagen designed software to detect when its cars were being tested. During test the software would modify the car’s performance to give a false result.
This is similar to the Stuxnet worm which sent Iranian operators false information indicating the uranium enrichment centrifuges were operating normally when in truth they were running at speeds well outside their design.
Both the Volkswagen fraud and the Stuxnet worm show how software can be used to tell lies about data. For processes and businesses relying on that data, it’s critical to know that information is reliable and correct.
Data is the raw material of the internet of things and all the value derived comes from analysing that information. If the information is false, then there’s no value in the IoT. Designing systems that guarantee the integrity of data is going to be essential as devices become more connected.