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Are you worried about driverless cars being hacked?

A recent survey found that the majority of American drivers don't expect autonomous vehicles to be on the road within the next 20 years. That may not be an accurate view, as self-driving vehicles have already in development, but the survey also found that Americans are unconvinced about the vehicles' safety.

American International Group, Inc., surveyed 1,000 people and found that only 42 percent were generally comfortable with the idea of sharing the road with driverless vehicles. Another 41 percent said they had reservations. Only 39 percent were convinced that computer-driven cars and trucks would operate more safely than those driven by human beings.

Interestingly, three-quarters of those surveyed said they worried that hackers could take control of autonomous vehicles and wreak havoc.

"Risk does not disappear - it shifts from humans to machines," said a spokesperson for AIG.

Who should be held responsible if an autonomous vehicle injures someone?

In an accident scenario involving a fully-autonomous vehicle, 50 percent of the survey respondents said the automaker should be held accountable, while 37 percent thought the software provider should be. Another 23 percent thought the car's occupants were at fault to some degree, while 19 percent thought the vehicle's owner should pay for damages.

If the vehicle was only partially automated, meaning the driver had some control over it, the survey respondents felt somewhat differently. In that case, 54 percent felt the driver was most responsible for the accident. Thirty-three percent thought the automaker was substantially liable, and 27 percent thought the software provider would be.

Cost, safety issues cited as most likely to delay driverless vehicles

On average, the survey respondents felt it would take about 22 years for autonomous vehicles to represent over 20 percent of vehicles on the road. They thought it would take 34 years, on average, before driverless cars and trucks would account for a majority of vehicles on the road. A separate study by AlixPartners, a consulting firm, found last month that the majority of Americans were unlikely to consider buying an autonomous vehicle.

What might delay the rollout of a significant number of driverless vehicles?

  • Cost (55 percent)
  • Inadequately secured computer systems (41 percent)
  • People's enjoyment of driving (41 percent)
  • Other safety concerns (35 percent)

Do you have reservations about owning or sharing the road with self-driving vehicles? Who do you think should be held responsible in the case of a crash?

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