RIYADH: King Saud University in Riyadh has been granted a patent in the US for software that protects the computer systems of electric cars when linking to charging stations.
The invention is named the Motor Vehicle Cyber Inspection System. After conducting an inspection, the system notifies the driver of the cybersecurity status on a smart display or mobile device. The system can scan for malware, ransomware, backdoors, data leakage, and software vulnerabilities.
Announcing the receipt of the patent, the KSU media center said Thursday the team that achieved this success was led by Prof. Muhammad Khurram Khan and included Dr. Wazir Khan.
“This breakthrough patent achievement highlights KSU’s dedication to pioneering research and technological advancements, solidifying its position at the forefront of innovation in automotive cybersecurity,” it said.
The approval was granted by the US Patent and Trademark Office on Jan. 16, and the application was submitted in March 2023.
Khan, who led the team, told Arab News: “The granting of this US patent to the KSU represents a momentous achievement in the realm of cybersecurity, particularly for the burgeoning automotive sector in Saudi Arabia under Vision 2030. The invention holds substantial significance for the local automotive industry, particularly for entities like Ceer Motors and the Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Company.”
“Saudi Vision 2030 emphasizes the importance of developing a skilled and knowledgeable workforce to meet the demands of a diversified economy. Therefore, the development and implementation of advanced technologies, as reflected in the patent, contribute to job creation and skill development,” he added.
Khan further said: “Integrating patented technology into vehicles and charging stations would offer a considerable competitive advantage. It would not only enhance the cybersecurity resilience of automotive products but also position local manufacturers at the forefront of technological innovation and economic diversification efforts while the Saudi automotive industry is taking off.”
He added that the “patent aligns with the national goals of technological innovation and localization. By implementing this technology locally, companies could contribute to building indigenous capabilities, fostering economic growth, and creating high-value jobs in the technology and automotive sectors.”
Under the Vision 2030 initiative, Saudi Arabia is actively diversifying its economy, with a particular emphasis on the automotive sector. This commitment is exemplified by the establishment of Ceer Motors, the Kingdom's inaugural EV brand, dedicated to manufacturing local electric vehicles.
Moreover, a recent development includes the launch of the Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Co., or EVIQ, a strategic initiative to bolster EV adoption. The firm aims to facilitate this transition by establishing a nationwide network of 1,000 charging stations consisting of 5,000 chargers by 2030.