Intro To Ev Ecosystem

How Ev Charging Works

EV charging is modelled on the process used to fill one’s car with gasoline/petrol. An electric cord and connector, not unlike a gasoline hose and nozzle, connects the BEV (battery electric vehicle) or PHEV (plug-in hybrid electric vehicle) to a power source. Level 1 chargers use the standard US 120V home outlet to recharge a car in 17-25 hours for 160 km (100 mi) of driving. Level 2 chargers require a 240V outlet to recharge a car in 4-5 hours for 160 km (100 mi) of driving.

As EVs becomes mainstream, they are increasingly purchased by middle- and lower-class owners who live in apartments and MDUs that lack the space required for personal charging stations. As such, EV charging is shifting from home charging to commercial public charging on streets, in office parks, commercial areas and parking garages with Level 2 chargers and fast-charging Level 3 chargers that recharge a vehicle in as little as 20 minutes.


The Electric Vehicle
cyber security Dilemma

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The role of the electric grid in the home charging process is relatively straightforward as the electricity for the EV is added to the monthly invoice from the local electric company. Commercial public charging with Level 2 and 3 EV charging systems is significantly more complex as these commercial systems are supported by a variety of billing, charging and transactional processes.

The higher hardware and installation cost of fast charging EV systems that provide Level 2 and Level 3 charging are often offset by enabling property owners, businesses and municipalities to offer public usage with a variety of pricing and access schemes such as time-of-day pricing, access control for groups such as employees or residents; managed waiting lists for charging using phone apps and more.

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The EV Charging Cycle

EV charging

The Ev Ecosystem

As the electric charging station market develops, the EV charging ecosystem includes a variety of businesses and service providers (not including the power suppliers to the grid). While some companies focus on specific areas of the ecosystem, such as owning the charging stations, others may perform multiple services such as locating a charging station, managing the payment, and even owning the EV charging stations.

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Leading EV security solutions should create a secure in-vehicle environment that enables the eMobility service provider to safely offer additional services or vehicle functionality to customers without threat of cyberattacks. [See benefits section below for more information.]

Cyberattacks & The Risks Of Ev Charging

EVs share all the cyberrisks of corporate
networks and mobile phones

The commercial public EV charging stations face numerous potential cyber and EV charging threats from criminals, disgruntled employees or hackers. As networked systems, electric vehicles share the cyberrisks of computers, mobile phones and connected vehicles, including ransomware, trojan viruses, DDoS attacks, corrupted OTA updates and app vulnerabilities—as well as the physical hacking of remote charging stations.


Cyberthieves can hack the charging station software and install viruses that will invade and lockdown unprotected vehicle until a ransom is paid.

Trojan Viruses

Physically connecting a vehicle to a compromised charger could enable the entry of trojan viruses that let cyberthieves gain control over the vehicle for hijacking goods, people or the vehicle.

Data Loss

Hacking vulnerable system hardware or exposed interfaces for wireless communication can let cyberthieves steal personal and financial information during payment.

DDoS attacks

Hackers flood PLC communications to deny services and charging ability

Grid Attacks

A compromised vehicle could be used to access the grid and cause outages, theft or demand a ransom

App Vulnerabilities

Apps for billing or locating charging stations could be exploited to penetrate safety-critical systems.

The Guardknox Ev Cybersecurity Solution

The customizable Built-to-Spec  solution for Electric Vehicles brings a new paradigm to the cybersecurity of connected and autonomous EVs. Using a patented three-layer Communication Lockdown™ Methodology, GuardKnox serves as an EV Charging ECU deterministically verifying communication between the vehicle and the EV charging ecosystem.

Examining all messages on the routing layer, the content layer and the contextual layer, GuardKnox permits only “legal” communication while dropping all unauthorized or improper communication.

GuardKnox ensures that all communications between EV owners and the eMobility service provider during the recharging and billing process are fully secure. Not only does GuardKnox verify that only the proper data is shared with the eMSP but also prevents non-relevant data from the eMSP crossing into the internal network of the vehicle or accessing unauthorized areas of the vehicle such as the drivetrain or engine.

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Ev Charging

Far Reaching Connectivity to the Grid and Beyond


Secure V2g communication

Safeguard the vehicle during charging/recharging process and prevent cyberattacks via compromised charging stations (EVSEs)

Secure Financial Transactions

Secure channel with Palo Alto Networks® protects credit card or personal data in transit (EVSEs)

Protection from Infected Vehicles

When using public chargers, your vehicle is protected even if the previously charging EV was infected by malware (EVSEs)

Autonomous Protection

Continuously protect your vehicle from all known and future unknown threats without software or firmware updates (EVSEs)

Scalability to Support Future Services

Support existing services used by today’s subsystems as well as support new services for Level 4 and Level 5 autonomous driving

Added Services for Recharging

Support services for off-peak recharging and pre-scheduled charging “appointments” that reduce waiting time for users (EVSEs)


Ensure that vehicle charging conforms to customer preferences and policies for battery optimization (EVSEs)

Analytics & Reporting

Monitor power usage when charging and enable in-depth analytics for improved customer service and monetization

Secure Environment

Provide a secure environment that protects your electric vehicle and your personal and financial data


The GuardKnox Built-to-Spec solution for Electric Vehicles brings a new paradigm of autonomous, future-proof cybersecurity for electric vehicles. As the era of the combustion vehicles fades away and tens of millions of EVs are deployed, vehicle-to-grid (V2G) systems will allow idle cars to help balance the electrical grid by discharging energy back to the grid.


The Electric Vehicle
cyber-security Dilemma

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