Hackers Break Into a Subaru Outback via Text Messages

When it comes to stealing cars, I prefer to use the old classic method: Take a brick, chunk it at the windshield, and hope to god you can find the green and red wire in time to hotwire the car before the cops show up. then you better get to a shop fast enough to deactivate the GPS or you are practically just taking a joy ride to the police station. Okay, so maybe I don’t know how to steal a car, but I’ve seen it on TV before. But what if you could steal a car by tricking the vehicle into thinking it’s not being stolen?

We’ve already seen SCADA systems controlled by a Google Search, but according to Engadget, the Black Hat Technical Security Conference revealed that there is a more “technological” way at breaking into a car. A couple of computer hackers from iSec Partners Security firm were able to unlock the vehicle, start the engine, and drive away… using only an Android phone. They used a type of hacking technique called war texting, they set up their own GSM network, and then they start to pick up passwords being sent out to the vehicles via their vehicle networks, similar to Onstar. The passwords are then duplicated and re sent to the vehicle when they want to drive off with it. So basically, they waited to get authentication packets form the vehicle networks, then using that packet they practically create a virtual electronic key, and all they do next, is send out new instructions to the vehicle and rewrite the code to their advantage.

I was once told by a security manager: “if the device or object can have the ability to receive a signal from a master control panel, you can actually replicate that signal and pretend to be the master control panel your self” in this case, the master control gets a brand new vehicle, free of charge, that is basically untraceable after it’s been re-coded.

According to the group, cars are NOT the only things that can be hacked. They claim to be able to hack GPS tracking devices, 3G security cameras, SCADA sensors, power grids, and even traffic control systems in urban towns. What were we expecting really? as technology becomes more and more computerized, hackers find ways to hack into those computer services.