Chinese hackers tricked Tesla’s Autopilot into switching lanes – DigitalMunition

Hacking News Tesla Model S P85D dual electric motor sedan.

Published on April 15th, 2019 📆 | 4023 Views ⚑


Chinese hackers tricked Tesla’s Autopilot into switching lanes

This isn’t the first time that Keen Security Labs has successfully hacked Tesla’s products.

The group of researchers, who are what is known as ethical or “white hat” hackers because their research is meant to improve the security of the products and companies they hack, are actually listed in Tesla’s “Security Researcher Hall of Fame” on the electric automaker’s website.

In the past, Keen Security Labs has taken part in the “bug bounty program” that Tesla launched in 2014, and which currently offers rewards of up to $15,000 to hackers who make Tesla aware of any potential vulnerabilities in the company’s software and other products. Recently, Tesla even awarded a Model 3 car to a pair of hackers who exposed a security bug in the Tesla vehicle that allowed them to take control of the car’s internal web browser.

In this case, though, Tesla noted that the research from Keen Security Labs does not qualify for Tesla’s bug bounty program because of the ability of drivers to override Autopilot.

“We know it took an extraordinary amount of time, effort, and skill, and we look forward to reviewing future reports from this group,” Tesla’s spokesperson said.

The company also said it has issued security updates over the past two years that already fixed other vulnerabilities mentioned in the hackers’ report.

Currently, Tesla’s Autopilot software is not yet fully autonomous — it can perform all driving functions in some circumstances but a human driver has to be ready at all times to take control of the vehicle.

And federal law in the U.S. requires that any cars with autonomous technology still be designed with conventional driver controls so that a human can quickly and easily take control of the vehicle. (Laws in China, where the researchers’ tests took place, have similar stipulations.) But those laws are expected to change as autonomous vehicles evolve.

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