New technology lets hackers hotwire cars remotely

Thursday - 7/28/2011, 11:59am EDT

The latest thing in automotive technology is software that allows drivers to unlock and start their cars using mobile phones. While it may sound cool, researchers at iSec Partners have discovered a way to hack the system, thus turning every cellular device into a hotwiring hacker's new best friend, Computer World reports.

The researchers made a video showing how they can unlock a car and start the engine even using a distant computer. The technique is complicated, but it involves intercepting text-messaging traffic between cell phones and automotive networks, such as General Motors' On-Star system. The researchers have dubbed their technique, war-texting. They promise to keep details a secret until the software makers develop a patch.

This story is part of Federal News Radio's daily Cybersecurity Update. For more cybersecurity news, click here.