Cars these days: So smart, so hackable

08/31/2014 8:00 PM

08/27/2014 2:38 PM

We know, we know, just like many “smart” things, cars can be hacked. But a new report says the most hackable cars are the 2014 Jeep Cherokee, 2015 Cadillac Escalade and 2014 Toyota Prius.

That’s according to CNNMoney, which said a couple of security researchers looked at 20 car models and their tech configurations. The researchers did not hack the cars themselves.

Their findings for the most hackable cars sound alarming because they have a common theme: having the steering, braking and engine controls on the same networks as the vehicles’ apps and Bluetooth could mean a threat to safety.

This isn’t the first time the Prius has been mentioned in the same breath as “hack.” Last year, a report showed ways the car could be hacked.

Basically, anything that’s connected to a network probably can be hacked: Think medical devices, light bulbs, traffic-management systems. And Steve Johnson, who covers the microchip industry, cyber security and the big-technology sector that includes Hewlett-Packard, Oracle and Cisco Systems, recently wrote about a separate report by HP that showed vulnerabilities in many commonly used Internet devices.

But back to the CNNMoney report. The least hackable cars, according to the researchers’ analysis: the 2014 Dodge Viper and 2014 Audi A8. And note Cadillac’s response: “The report does not mention many new security features and mechanisms installed in the Escalade, and its description of the vehicle’s electronic system is not fully accurate.”

Editor's Choice Videos

Join the Discussion

News & Observer is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Terms of Service