Hacking a car? Yes, really…and you thought I was kidding!

A few weeks ago I blogged about whether an unauthorized access of a car that has a computer and is connected to the Internet would violate the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. Did you read it? Or, did you think it sounded too ridiculous?

Here it is if you want to take a look: Can stealing a CAR violate the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act?

Image from gizbuy.com

Now go read this article written by Theresa Payton of Fortalice, LLC: Car Hack Attack The article was based on a television segment by Kristin Miranda of WBTV entitled Protecting Your Cyberturf. Care to guess the subject?

Hacking the computer of cars through malware embedded music downloads that then enable the hackers to open the doors, start the engine, and steal the car. Go read the article and see for yourself.

Now think about the question I asked a few weeks ago: do you think stealing a car can violate the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act?

5 thoughts on “Hacking a car? Yes, really…and you thought I was kidding!

  1. Greetings from your favourite sci-fi loving amateur physicist, military historian, and gearhead. 😀 (Try getting someone to print THAT on a business card.)
    I’ve seriously been waiting to hear about this since I saw the first OnStar commercial for “concierge” unlocking and starting of your car. If some clerk in a call center can unlock your car, so can somebody with a transmitter on the proper frequency and a hacked access code/password. Now that OnStar lets you do it from YOUR phone, all somebody needs is one of the “phone sweeper” gimmicks, that lets you sweep the area for cell phones and download their data.
    And people wonder why I’m so fond of my 1987 Cavalier, with a computer dumber than my Apple 2e. Or why I’m always on the lookout for even older cars without chips. It isn’t just about surviving the pre-World War 3 EMP attacks! 😉

  2. Hey stranger,

    First off, congratulations on the big step. It’s been awhile. Second, wanted to stop by and say hey and see how you’ve been doing. Wonderful I hear. Have been chatting with Bob!

    Not having read the other article yet, I would have to say hell yeah. It’s still breaking and entering isn’t it and if they are doing it through computers I would think it would still fall under that. The nerve of some people. Well, I don’t have to worry about them breaking into mine. It’s a 12 year old car. LOL!!!

    Have a great weekend Shawn. Hope you aren’t as hot there as we are here.


    1. Adrienne, how are you? Howdy to you as well, stranger! haha!

      Thank you very much and I am very glad to hear you have been chatting with Bob — he is a hoot!

      As for your perception of the CFAA issue, yep, I think you got it right … if a car has a computer chip and is connected to the Internet, it’s defined as a computer and it certainly would fall within its purview. I think you’ve got the right idea, however, with the 12 year old car — very smart — I’m wondering if I can use this as an excuse to persuade my wife into letting me get that ’68 ‘vette I’ve always wanted? 🙂

      I hope all continues to go well for you and that you’re enjoying a little nicer weather — thank you again for coming by to say hello!


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