From the Thesis Abstract: "The technology integrated into fully autonomous vehicles will soon be a significant homeland security threat. Companies ranging from major corporations to small startups are investing billions of dollars developing this technology. It is currently predicted that fully autonomous vehicles will be available to the general public within a matter of years. As fully autonomous vehicles become broadly available both to the general public and private entities, significant impacts will likely result to our safety, both as individuals and as a community. This thesis overviews the projected threat posed by the nefarious use of fully autonomous vehicles as fully autonomous vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices. It is shown how easily autonomous vehicles can be used for explosive delivery and discusses technological solutions that should be implemented, proactively, to reduce this threat. A pressing need exists for secure communications, user authentication, law enforcement override, and payload interrogation that must be implemented at the outset of the system design process. Absent a security-based systems design approach, this nation will be reacting to, rather than preventing, the use of autonomous vehicles as explosive delivery systems. The overarching purpose of this thesis is also to capture what can be accomplished with public-private partnerships working collaboratively to address strategic issues involving public safety in the United States."
Naval Postgraduate School, Dudley Knox Library: https://calhoun.nps.edu/