Hackers Will One Day Take Over Your Car Because It is a Giant Computer On Wheels

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Little do you know, modern-day cars are like big computers rolling on 4 wheels. There are multiple electronic components on cars, many of which use microprocessors like the computer or smartphone you are reading this article on. Fundamentally, your car has more computing power than was used to launch the rockets and pilot the spacecrafts during the Apollo space program landing many men on the Moon. Thing kicker is, with cars having all of this technology and computer equipment, hackers can take advantage of it and gain control of your vehicle.

Imagine one day you are cruising down the interstate hovering around 70 mph, when suddenly your brakes lock up, and you cause a massive pileup. That wouldn’t be very cool would it. The thing is, this could very well happen if a hacker gained control of the computers on your car, it has been done in testing environments proving case in point.

On any given modern-day car, there are about 50 to over 100 small computers that control several components of your car from the power steering, brakes or your airbags. All of these components must work in sync to provide you with simple transportation from point A to B. You can think of it all like a central nervous system or a main CPU with multiple components or i/o devices attached to it via USB connections. If a hacker infiltrates the CPU, they have unadulterated control over all connected components.

The complexity of cars now days is growing, which leaves vehicles vulnerable to issues and even remote attacks. If a hacker were able to connect to a vehicle in some form, they can seriously wreak havoc on a car and basically cause the vehicle to crash, no matter what the driver did to help prevent it. The video below is a demonstration, which may be considered to be extreme due to hackers physically connecting to the car’s computer systems, of hackers controlling a cars steering and brakes.

After viewing the video above, you can conclude that cars are, in fact, hackable. With newer connectivity modules, such as those found in the new Tesla Model S or new Audi vehicles, there is a WIFI or wireless connection that links systems up to the vehicle in ways to get diagnostic reports, remedy an electronic issue or update firmware on the car. This would be the future gateway for hackers to infiltrate a vehicle without physically connecting to it with wires.

Security experts and those who work on various wireless systems to integrate infotainment systems of vehicles all agree that it will take a while for the auto industry to move to a more security internal network than what we are working off of today. This alone is pretty scary.

Have you ever seen the movie Eagle Eye when crooks take over and virtually drive a Porsche Cayenne SUV (clip posted below with NSFW language)? Yeah, that is probably what we may face one day when hackers finally crack the proverbial computer code to control vehicles. Will you be ready?

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