The computer we think of in vehicles today first was seen in the early 90’s as a replacement to large circuitry. Manufacturers designed small micro processing chips that could perform 1000 times that of the older circuitry system.
With technology advancing so fast there is a new threat to drivers, hackers. In 2013 it was demonstrated that a hacker can disable your brakes, honk your horn, jerk the seat belt, and commandeer your steering wheel.
Today hackers now can take control of a vehicle’s radio, air conditioner, heater, windshield wipers and fluid making it difficult to see, and even turn your vehicle off while in motion.
“I WAS DRIVING 70 mph on the edge of downtown St. Louis when the exploit began to take hold,” said human test dummy and journalist, Andy Greenberg. “Though I hadn’t touched the dashboard, the vents in the Jeep Cherokee started blasting cold air at the maximum setting, chilling the sweat on my back through the in-seat climate control system. Next the radio switched to the local hip hop station and began blaring Skee-lo at full volume. I spun the control knob left and hit the power button, to no avail. Then the windshield wipers turned on, and wiper fluid blurred the glass.”
Charlie Miller and Chris Valasek developed a hacking technique that can give the attacker wireless control, via the Internet, to thousands of vehicles.
“When you lose faith that a car will do what you tell it to do it really changes your whole view of how the thing works.” said Charlie Miller, one of the hackers responsible for the vehicles bizarre behavior.
The software lets hackers deliver instructions using the Jeep’s entertainment system subsequently “allowing them to take control of dashboard functions, steering, brakes, and transmission, all from a laptop that may be across the country,” Wired magazine touts.
The hackers research has lead to senators Ed Markey and Richard Blumenthal plan to introduce an automotive security bill to set new digital security standards.
Automobiles prior to the 1990’s are least likely to be hacked due to the old style of circuitry.
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