With all the recent news surrounding possible vulnerability and security flaws with vehicles, a report has been released detailing the most hackable cars on today’s roads.
Forensic engineering consulting firm, PT&C|LWG analyzed today’s cars finding that they use anywhere from 20 to 70 computers, making them vulnerable to hacking. According to the firm, vehicles with the highest risk of digital threat have the most features networked together, especially where radio or WiFi networks can be connected to physical components of the vehicles.
What has become the poster child for car hacking is the 2014 Jeep Cherokee and the American automaker’s Uconnect infotainment system. Recently exposed as the only vehicle to be recalled due to its potential hackability, the Jeep’s Uconnect system not only controls navigation, WiFi and Bluetooth, but has access to numerous drive functions including brakes, engine, steering, adaptive cruise control, parking assistance, crash mitigation and lane-departure warning systems. Although the vulnerability was exposed on the Cherokee, 1.4-million vehicles from Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) have been recalled so a software update can be done to correct the issue.
Even luxury sedan shoppers aren’t immune, as the Infiniti Q50 also found its way onto the list. The Infiniti Connection System has vulnerabilities from cellular networks, Bluetooth and AM/FM/XM Radio, which could affect the driver assistance, adaptive steering, adaptive cruise control and keyless entry systems. The sedan was also recalled due to a fault in the Direct Adaptive Steering software, which could potentially disable power steering when the engine reaches freezing temperatures.
Other vehicles on the list include the Cadillac Escalade, Toyota Prius and Ford Fusion, all of which rely on some sort of system that has access to WiFi, Bluetooth and a cellular network.
The firm also released a list of the least hackable cars, which include the 2014 Audi A8, Dodge Viper, Honda Accord and Tesla Model S. It said that the least hackable cars are those with the fewest computerized and networked components, which means the vehicle’s networks can’t communicate with other physical components of the vehicle. This is also interesting because Tesla was the subject of a hacking scare, but the automaker quickly released a patch to correct the issue.