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The main benefit of vehicular communication is seen in active safety systems that increase passenger safety by exchanging warning messages between vehicles. Other applications and private services are also permitted in order to lower the cost and to encourage vehicular network deployment and adoption. The allocation of 75 MHz in the 5.9 GHz frequency band licensed for dedicated short range communications (DSRC), which supports seven separate channels, may also enable the future delivery of rich multimedia contents to vehicles at short- to medium-range via vehicular communications. There are many challenges that must be addressed before vehicular networks can be successfully deployed. Among these challenges is designing of security mechanisms to secure vehicular networks against abuse, and designing of efficient medium access control (MAC) protocols so that safety related and other application messages can be timely and reliably disseminated through vehicular networks. In this paper, we give an overview on a priority based secure MAC protocol for vehicular networks and present detailed security and performance analysis. We show that the MAC protocol can achieve both QoS and security requirements for vehicular network safety applications.