New target for hackers: your car
With a plethora of processors and 20 times the processing power of a fighter jet lurking underneath the metal of a typical luxury car, it might be time to install some anti-virus for your set of wheels now that its been proven vehicles can be hacked from afar.
According to the researchers, it was a little tough to get into the car's main computer system (ECU) – provided you have $1,500 worth of equipment.
But once in your car's ECU through the tire pressure sensors, hackers could send the driver an error message saying they had a flat. In the past, researchers (or potential hackers, if you will) have also found the ECU gives them access to honk the horn, kill the braeks or jam the gas “pedal.”
But the thing here is they can do it wirelessly. It's one thing to break into your home with a crowbar – it's another to do it from up to 40 metres away.
Let's not forget how many vehicles are designed for wireless phone integration over Bluetooth.
Many Ford models feature Microsoft Sync, a clever system which links your vehicle's electronics to your mobile phone. GM is in a similar class, especially with its deal with Google to provide service in its vehicles.
Couple all this with a report from computer security giant McAffee that malware threats are at an all-time high, it could be a matter of time before someone's airbags randomly deploy.
- Maurice Cacho, MSN Tech & Gadgets