Ben Nassi – Keynote Speaker

Jacobs Urban Tech Hub Fellow and a postdoctoral researcher at Cornell Tech

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Specialist Subjects

  • Safety vs. Security for AI of Autonomous Cars?
  • AI is coming.. Are you ready?
  • Making Smart Cities Safer



  • English


Dr. Ben Nassi reveals the new security and privacy challenges/risks that emerged from the interface between end users and AI-powered systems in the physical and digital worlds while explaining the needed mechanisms to secure society from cyber-physical systems and Ai-powered systems that have yet to be invented.

With 10 years of experience in offensive security, winning the Pwnie Award 2023 (the industry award for computer hacking), frequently speaking at the three greatest industrial cybersecurity conferences (BlackHat, DEFCON, RSAC), and being the first to demonstrate secret key recovery and audible speech recovery from a device’s status LED, Dr. Nassi gained international attention (Wired, Forbes, Fox News, Business Insider, MIT Technology Review) after he remotely triggered Tesla’s autopilot to stop the car in the middle of the road (in response to a compromise McDonald’s advertisement presented on an Internet-connected digital billboard) and after he found an innovative method to detect targeted drone activity in which a drone is illicitly filming a victim.

A cybersecurity consultant for international conglomerate corporations, BlackHat board member, and one of the famous white-hat cybersecurity researchers, Dr. Nassi focuses on the increasing interaction between systems (especially AI-powered systems) and end-users in the physical and digital worlds and the new opportunities they create for attackers to exploit them.

On stage, Ben Nassi shatters some of the commonly held beliefs regarding the security and privacy of systems and shows breathtaking video demonstrations that illustrate the challenges associated with the security and privacy of Teslas, drones, smart irrigation systems, LLM, and end users. By explaining that the recent advancements in the deployment of AI-powered cyber-physical systems (drones, and autonomous vehicles) and AI-powered chatbots require a paradigm shift in security and privacy practices, Dr. Nassi’’s enlightening presentations help audiences understand the risks posed by the AI era and walk away with solutions for prevention.

Popular Talks by Ben Nassi

Safety vs. Security for AI of Autonomous Cars?

After extensive research and development, the automobile industry is on the cusp of a new era in computing with the emergence of semi and fully autonomous cars, which offer automatic alternatives to traditional manual driving. However, as we approach this transformational shift, critical questions arise concerning the risks associated with the AI that powers these autonomous vehicles. How can we ensure the security of the AI systems controlling these cars? And is it possible that a seemingly more secure AI could paradoxically lead to more dangerous driving scenarios? In a compelling talk, join Ben Nassi as he delves into the safety and security challenges associated with autonomous vehicles. Ben will shed light on how seemingly innocent objects like digital billboards and emergency vehicles, encountered frequently while driving, can actually jeopardize the safety of both the autonomous car’s occupants and other road users. He will present video demonstrations illustrating these risks specifically concerning Tesla vehicles. Furthermore, Ben will meticulously analyze the existing security mechanisms in place and argue for the necessity of developing new and dedicated approaches to secure the AI driving these autonomous vehicles which can withstand potential threats and guarantee passenger safety. Lastly, Ben will address a counter-intuitive belief: that enhancing AI security might somehow lead to more dangerous driving conditions. Through thoughtful analysis, Ben will explain how greater AI security can, in fact, contribute to less safe and more dangerous driving. Join us for this enlightening discussion on the safety and security challenges of the autonomous vehicle revolution.

AI is coming.. Are you ready?

We have officially entered the era of AI, where prominent companies like OpenAI, Google, Tesla, and others have seamlessly integrated AI models into both physical (e.g., autonomous vehicles) and digital systems (e.g., chatbots). These AI-powered systems continuously and extensively interact with end users, presenting exciting opportunities and cutting-edge functionalities. However, this revolutionary integration of AI also introduces unprecedented risks that demand our attention. What do we truly understand about these new risks posed to end users by AI?  In this talk, Ben Nassi delves into the challenges arising from integrating AI into physical and digital systems that heavily interact with end users. Ben conducts an analysis of the new threat models emerging from the interface between AI and end-users. Through compelling videos, he demonstrates how attackers can exploit these systems: (1) by implanting malicious banners on websites to target users of an LLM, and (2) by compromising advertisements displayed on digital billboards to attack drivers and passengers of autonomous vehicles. During the talk, Ben thoroughly examines the current security mechanisms employed to protect end users from potential threats. Despite their existence, he highlights the imperative need for new and dedicated security mechanisms specifically tailored to safeguard end users against AI-based systems like chatbots, autonomous vehicles, and others. As the talk reaches its conclusion, Ben focuses on discussing the precautions that end-users must adopt while interacting with AI-based systems. By embracing proactive measures, we can ensure the safe integration of AI into systems that extensively interface with end users.

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