US Army M1 Abrams tanks get ‘stops zero-day cyberattacks’ upgrade

WASHINGTON — The United States is preparing its armored vehicles for war on the “modern” battlefield, learned, citing Defense Express. The US Army Center for Ground Vehicle Systems [GVSC] has announced a successful demonstration of a new system designed to protect ground vehicles from cyberattacks.

The US Army received the most modern M1A2 SEP V3 Abrams tank
Photo credit: Wikipedia

The fact is that because most US Army vehicles were designed long before modern threats, such as cyberattacks, they remain vulnerable to these threats and require reliable cybersecurity technologies.

The demonstration of the new system is known to have been part of an exercise known as the Cyber ​​Cyclone, which took place at the Hume test site in September 2021 as part of a larger Project Convergence event.

In this demonstration, the M1A2 Abrams was equipped with Peraton’s 1553 Bus Defender, a cyber-attack detection and prevention system aimed at the platform’s data bus [a hardware subsystem that handles data transmission to and from adjacent systems].

It is noted that “remotely simulated cyber threats” aimed at the M1A2 data bus were used to test this system. When Bus Defender was activated, it “successfully protected itself from threats while maintaining the full functionality and availability of the system.” The data of this demonstration will be the basis for further research of the system.

US Army M1 Abrams tanks get 'stops zero-day cyberattacks' upgrade
Photo credit: Defense Express

The Bus Defender system was developed by the Office of Cyber ​​Development of Terrestrial Systems as part of the “Automotive Systems Safety” project. It is designed to protect armored vehicles and other vehicles from intruders who want to hack or disable critical vehicle systems while operating in a cyber-competitive environment.

Main benefits of the Bus Defender solution:

  • Requires no changes to existing warfighting system software or configurations
  • Makes it very difficult for an attacker to disable security, unlike software-only solutions
  • Supports multi-level security objectives to protect against untrusted LRUs
  • Stops zero-day attacks as well as known vulnerabilities
  • Prevents the loading of malicious operational programs onto the LRUs
  • Meets stringent delay constraints for the MIL-STD-1553 protocol
  • Can be configured to meet platform-specific architecture requirements


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