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Researchers Hack Cars via Wireless Tire Pressure Sensors

Researchers hack into car's tire pressure computer.
Back in May, we told you about a study that proved it's fairly easy to remotely hack into a car's onboard computer. Now, according to Technology Review, researchers at the University of South Carolina and Rutgers University have figured out how to hack into the tire-pressure-monitoring systems (TPMS) featured on many vehicles. The researchers used easy-to-find equipment that cost about $1,500 -- including a programmable radio transmitter, a specialized circuit board and free software -- to remotely hack the TPMS. By doing so, they could trigger warning lights by altering wireless communications, and remotely track the vehicle wherever it went, due to the fact that each TPMS features a unique ID.

In and of themselves, these findings, which will be presented at a security conference in Washington, D.C. this week, don't pose a huge threat to drivers. The troubling part is the bigger picture; it appears that more and more evidence supports the idea that the wireless computer systems featured on most vehicles are greatly lacking in security. These built-in computer systems have made driving both more pleasurable and safer, but, as with any industry, technological change should never outpace security or safety. [From: Technology Review]

Tags: car, car tech, CarHacking, cartech, hack, RutgersUniversity, security, top, tpms, UniversityOfSouthCarolina