Wednesday, 29 March 2017
Auto Security

A journalist got remotely hacked while driving his jeep

As the whole world is going wireless and depending on the internet, things just might become very terrifying security-wise. From the lights and fans in our homes, to some expensive cars, hackers can exploit vulnerabilities that enable them take over a device wirelessly. This was exactly what happened to a Jeep Cherokee this week.

This is the first time this is happening

The security of wireless technologies isn’t highly improved and prone to hacking, this was the moral of a story on Wired.

Two hackers had taken planned control over a Jeep Cherokee with the Wired correspondent driving. They took over the car using a software vulnerability.

“As the two hackers remotely toyed with the air-conditioning, radio, and windshield wipers, I mentally congratulated myself on my courage under pressure. That’s when they cut the transmission.

Immediately my accelerator stopped working. As I frantically pressed the pedal and watched the RPMs climb, the Jeep lost half its speed, then slowed to a crawl. This occurred just as I reached a long overpass, with no shoulder to offer an escape. The experiment had ceased to be fun.“

All Chrysler vehicles from late 2013 onwards are prone to this sort of hacking. The main vulnerability is the company’s Uconnect software.

A patch is being developed and will be rolled out, but drivers have to visit the service center or use a USB stick to install it.

So if you thought getting a malware in your PC or phone was bad; just imagine a group of cars beings wirelessly hijacked off the road and made to cause ordered chaos.

Undoubtedly car manufacturers are also aware of this and will put high priority in getting their security measures more advanced- but Wired’s article is a realization that the sci-fi 21st-century threat is becoming real.

Image Courtesy: Wierd.com