#472 August 8, 2016 – Vehicle Hacking 2.0

This week’s headline story: Vehicle Hacking 2.0

News regarding vehicle hacking seems to be getting worse! Last year, Hackers in St. Louis, Missouri were shown remotely controlling a Jeep Cherokee from their laptop. Shortly after, Nissan had to shut down its Leaf app because of vulnerabilities. Now, a pair of hackers in Houston, Texas, stole more than 30 Jeeps over a six-month period. The two were caught using a laptop to connect to and start a Jeep Wrangler Unlimited. The vehicles were brought across the border to Mexico. Homeland Security is investigating more than 100 stolen Fiat Chrysler Automobiles that they believe were hacked using similar techniques.

Big RigBut it get’s worse! A group of University of Michigan researchers have conducted similar hacking tests on big rig trucks and industrial vehicles. By sending digital signals within the internal network of a big rig truck, the researchers were able to do everything from change the readout of the truck’s instrument panel, trigger unintended acceleration, or to even disable one form of semi-trailer’s brakes. And the researchers found that developing those attacks was actually easier than with consumer cars! “These trucks carry hazard chemicals and large loads. And they’re the backbone of our economy,” says Bill Hass, one of the researchers from the University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute. “If you can cause them to have unintended acceleration…I don’t think it’s too hard to figure out how many bad things could happen with this.”

other Technology Headlines…

  • US police use machine learning to curb their own violence [New Scientist]
    The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department in North Carolina is piloting an Artificial Intelligence system designed to tackle the police violence that has become a heated issue in the US in the past three years. A team at the University of Chicago is helping them feed their data into a machine learning system that learns to spot risk factors for unprofessional conduct. The department can then intervene before risk transforms into actual harm. The system has identified 48 out of 83 adverse incidents between 2005 and now – 12 per cent more than Charlotte-Mecklenberg’s existing early intervention system
  • Google’s Parent Company Alphabet To Test Drone Delivery [NewsFactor]
    Google’s parent company Alphabet will test its “Project Wing” drones for cargo delivery to help the federal government create policies for safely bringing goods to U.S. consumers by air. “Data gathered will be shared with government partners to help regulators answer critical safety and human-factors questions for (drone) cargo delivery operations,” the White House said in a news release.

in Information Security News…

and in Tech Industry News…

  • Latest to Quit Google’s Self-Driving Car Unit: Top Roboticist [NYTimes]
    Many of the top scientists that pioneered Google’s research and development on self-driving car, are leaving the company. This comes shortly after Google’s decision to hire John Krafcik, the former president and chief executive of Hyundai America, to be chief of the car project, as part of a plan to spin the effort out as a stand-alone company under the Alphabet umbrella.
  • Amazon Unveils Cargo Plane As It Expands Delivery Network [NewsFactor]
    Amazon is unveiling its first branded cargo plane, one of 40 jetliners that will make up the e-commerce giant’s own air transportation network as it takes more control of its delivery process.
  • Apple Gets Feds’ OK To Start Selling Electricity [NewsFactor]
    Federal energy regulators have approved Apple’s application to start selling electricity at market rates. This after Apple’s $850 million partnership with sun-farm company First Solar, at the California Flats solar project in southeast Monterey County. Apple’s 200 megawatts of generation capacity represents a “measurable fraction” of the more than 10,000 megawatts of solar-generated power that has come online in the U.S. this year. For Apple, investment in solar is also a step toward its goal of powering all its operations with clean energy.

and finally,

  • On-demand drone insurance launches in the US [Engadget]
    Tired of having to pay out the nose for damage you caused with your remote control drone aircraft? Verifly now offers on-demand drone insurance! next time, before you fly over a crowd, or near pesky buildings, just click the Verifly app on your phone and purchase insurance by the hour, starting at $10.

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