Experts Call on Auto Industry to Take Car Hacking Seriously

The hackers who stopped a Jeep remotely are back proving more of today’s vehicles have security vulnerabilities.

This time, cybersecurity researchers Charlie Miller and Chris Valasek hijacked the steering and brake systems by plugging into the car’s electronic system.

What the researchers have done is difficult, but they believe car companies can get ahead of the problem and build safer electronic systems.

“Let’s make this harder to do. Any technology system can be leveraged by attackers,” said Miller, at Black Hat, the massive computer security conference in Las Vegas.

Mike Belton, vice president for applied research with Optiv, also chimed in.

“I think the auto manufacturers definitely understand that if they don’t get this right, they’re going to have regulatory and insurance pressures and consumer adoption issues,” Belton told USA Today.

Any actual hack “would be a business-ending event,” Belton added.

One big problem manufacturers face is that new cars are designed for older models and problems with legacy systems can carry over.

“If we don’t see (a) change in five years, I’ll be really disappointed. It’s something that really needs to be there,” Miller said.

Read more about gradual changes by automakers at USA