Hackers break into car using a mobile phone

No, it's not a bricked iPhone
Aug 10, 2011

TopGear.com.ph Philippine Car News - Hackers break into car using a mobile phone

Hackers have proven that it's actually possible to break into a car using only a mobile phone--and it doesn't involve throwing it at the car's window in the hope that the safety glass will give way.

Using a mobile phone with an Android operating system and a technique the pair has called "war texting," Don Bailey and Matthew Solnik exploited two unnamed remote-controlled products that have been designed to lock and unlock cars from a distance, TGDaily.com reported.

With a Subaru Outback as their target vehicle, Bailey and Solnik, security researchers from iSec Partners, demonstrated this at the recent Black Hat security conference held in Las Vegas, Nevada, by not only unlocking the car through the mobile phone but by also starting its engine.

According to the report, Bailey and Solnik first set up their own GSM network and were then able to intercept the password authentication messages between the server and the car in only a couple of hours.

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

Although both Bailey and Solnik did not reveal any other detail like how they hacked the remote system or say which cars were vulnerable to a similar attack, the report stated that General Motors, BMW and Mercedes-Benz offered similar remote-control apps.

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We think this is one example that we should be thankful that the Philippines is so far behind in these kinds of mobile-phone-based technologies and apps.

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