Computer security experts are now focusing on cars as automakers increasingly include computers and electronic communication systems in their latest models.
McAfee is pursuing research on car security at a Beaverton, Ore., garage, and has issued a report on automotive systems security. Meanwhile, researchers at the University of California, San Diego, and the University of Washington have devised a way to hack into a car using a laptop, and researchers at the University of South Carolina and Rutgers have demonstrated how to compromise passenger privacy by tracking radio frequency identification tags using long-distance readers at about 40 meters.
Onboard diagnostics systems, wireless connections, and compromised CDs played on radio systems could serve as conduits for computer worms and Trojans. Hackers could attack the computer systems to steal cars, spy on in-car conversations, or cause crashes. Although U.S. automakers say they are unaware of any attacks with malicious software and have yet to issue any recalls to fix security vulnerabilities, they are concerned about the issue, according to a Reuters report.
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