Friday, August 5, 2011

Anyone can steal a Subaru Outback with an Android phone

Don Bailey and Matthew Solnik from iSec Partners demonstrated how to break into a car and hack into its remote control system.

Their research was shown at the Black Hat security conference in Las Vegas, and they unlocked a Subaru Outback and started the engine from a distance using an Android handset and the so-called 'war texting'. You need to set your own GSM network around the car for that, and then intercept the password authentication text messages between the server and the car, all in just a few hours.

Actually the researchers are not worried about stealing cars, but rather that the same remote control systems with text messaging updates are in traffic lights and security cameras, as well as the power grid and water supply infrastructure. If anyone with skills, an Android handset and some relatively inexpensive wireless network equipment can hack into the remote control system of popular car brands, what's to stop someone from doing it on a grander scale, they argued.

"I could care less if I could unlock a car door. It's cool. It's sexy. But the same system is used to control phone, power, traffic systems. I think that's the real threat.", said Don Bailey for CNN.

source: TGDaily via Engadget