Sunday December 04, 2022

Teen Hacker claims he can remotely access and unlock over 25 Tesla cars

Cyber threats to electric vehicles are a growing concern. Cyber threats are a growing concern when it comes to electric vehicles. We’ve seen reports about hackers hacking into Tesla vehicles in the past. But, recently, a teenager claimed to have access to 25+ Teslas from more than ten countries. David Colombo, a self-described IT specialist, posted a lengthy thread on Twitter detailing his claims. These statements suggest that he discovered a security flaw which allows him to remotely control multiple vehicles using Tesla’s systems. Colombo quickly confirmed that this was not an issue with Tesla security systems, but rather an issue on the owner’s side.
The youngster claims he can unlock doors, roll down windows, access remote camera systems, and even start keyless driving. He can’t access the throttle or steering but he claims he can find the location of vehicles. Although it is unlikely that he will summon your Tesla Model S anytime soon this is still a worrying discovery.
David Colombo tweeted, “It’s pretty dangerous if someone can remotely blast music at full volume or open windows/doors while your on the highway.”

So now I have remote control of over 20 Tesla’s in ten countries. There seems to not be a way to find their owners and report it to them.
— David Colombo (@david_colombo_), January 10, 2022

There is a silver lining to this story. He was able only to do this with 25 vehicles in selected regions and by accessing an owner side system, not Tesla’s infrastructure. Colombo stated that he had informed Tesla’s security staff about the discovery, and they are currently investigating.
Tesla has since reset security for several third party apps, but the 19 year old suggests that some of those apps aren’t related to the current situation.
Hackers being able access Tesla vehicles remotely is a concern. We can expect more details and security upgrades to address this situation in the future. Tesla is very responsive when it comes to updating, so keep checking back. Tesla does not have a press office so we couldn’t reach out to you.
Ars Technica

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