Cars and tech: Chrysler recall over hacking concerns, plus Tesla, Honda and more

We have developments at the corner of Cars and Tech.

Showing that carmakers’ embrace of connected technology in their vehicles can be costly, Chrysler today announced a recall of 1.4 million vehicles that are at risk for hacking, a after a report this week that hackers were able to remotely take control of a Jeep Cherokee. A Wired reporter — who called himself a “digital crash-test dummy” — driving a Jeep Cherokee on the highway wrote that a couple of hackers were able to disable his brakes, control the steering and mess with the air conditioning and windshield wipers, among other things.

Also, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration launched a “recall query” to look at the fixes Chrysler is proposing. Affected drivers — of Dodges, Jeeps, Rams and Chryslers equipped with certain types of radios — will receive a USB device to upgrade their software. And Chrysler said it applied on Thursday a network-level fix that’s supposed to block unauthorized remote access to vehicles.

In other connected-cars news:

• Security researchers plan to reveal vulnerabilities in Tesla’s Model S at the Defcon hacking conference next month, according to Forbes. They haven’t given a hint about what weaknesses they’ve uncovered, but have apparently promised their talk will be “epic.” Tesla vehicles are among the most-connected cars out there; the company is known for doling out cool upgrades via software updates.

Matt O’Brien reported that Honda unveiled its new Accord in Silicon Valley on Thursday, and announced an expansion of its R&D center in Mountain View. The Accord will be among the first vehicles to offer both Apple CarPlay and Google Android Auto, which are systems that integrate the smartphone experience in cars. Naturally, these systems have raised safety and privacy concerns.

• And speaking of privacy concerns, Bloomberg reports that auto insurers are chasing after driver data. They want to make money off that data by selling it to businesses that might want to target their advertising based on driver behavior. Also, the insurers are painting their efforts as a way to reward good drivers, but of course don’t talk about how that same data could possibly be used to penalize bad drivers.


Photo of a Jeep Cherokee from Associated Press


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,


Share this Post