Two programmers used a laptop to take control of a Ford and Toyota, and will present their findings at a hackers conference next month. Does this pose a worry for motorists?
There is almost nothing more terrifying in a car than finding you can’t control the vehicle. Anybody who’s been in a skid or lost brake pressure can attest to this. So the notion that hackers could take control of a car, as two recently demonstrated for Forbes writer Andy Greenberg, represents just about the worst-case scenario for modern, electronically controlled cars.
With vehicles ever more connected to the Internet, GPS and cellular networks, programmers Charlie Miller and Chris Valasek say they’ve worked out a way to access the computers in a 2010 Toyota Prius and 2010 Ford Escape. Once they take over the onboard computer, they can control anything from the radio to the brakes, they say.