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Scientists Hack Into Cars' Computers

By ABC News

August 23, 2010



It sounds like a Hollywood movie: cybercriminals in a van use a laptop to hack wirelessly into the computer-controlled systems of the car on the road ahead. In seconds the target car's engine, brakes, and door locks are under their nefarious control.

It doesn't take a great script writer to figure out what's next—except that it's not the movies anymore. It's real—well, almost.

Hackers aren't taking over our cars just yet, but without tighter computer security they be able to before too long, research conducted by scientists at four universities indicates.

For example, scientists hacked into a car's computer system by commandeering the wireless tire-pressure monitoring signal of a target vehicle—all while driving at more than 60 miles per hour, according to a joint study released Thursday by Rutgers University and the University of South Carolina.

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