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In Letter To 20 Automakers, Senator Demands Answers On Cybersecurity

Soulskill posted about 4 months ago | from the no-mr.-bond,-i-expect-you-to-die dept.

Transportation 80

chicksdaddy writes "Cyber attacks on 'connected vehicles' are still in the proof of concept stage. But those proofs of concept are close enough to the real thing to prompt an inquiry from U.S. Senator Ed Markey, who sent a letter to 20 major auto manufacturers (PDF) asking for information about consumer privacy protections and safeguards against cyber attacks in their vehicles. Markey's letter, dated December 2, cites recent reports of 'commands...sent through a car's computer system that could cause it to suddenly accelerate, turn or kill the breaks,' and references research conducted by Charlie Miller and Chris Valasek (PDF) on the Toyota Prius and Ford Escape. 'Today's cars and light trucks contain more than 50 separate electronic control units (ECUs), connected through a controller area network (CAN) ... Vehicle functionality, safety and privacy all depend on the functions of these small computers, as well as their ability to communicate with one another,' Markey wrote. Among the questions Markey wants answers to: What percentage of cars sold in model years 2013 and 2014 do not have any wireless entry points? What are automakers' methods for testing for vulnerabilities in technologies it deploys — including third pressure technologies? Markey asks specifically about tire pressure monitors, bluetooth and other wireless technologies and GPS (like Onstar). What third party penetration testing is conducted on vehicles (and any results)? What intrusion detection features exist for critical components like controller area network (CAN) buses on connected vehicles?"

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80 comments

Boston brakes. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45602707)

I like manual brakes.

Re:Boston brakes. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45602905)

I like manual brakes.

If they were good enough for the Flintstones they're good enough for a Senator!

Re:Boston brakes. (1)

ackthpt (218170) | about 4 months ago | (#45603191)

I like manual brakes.

If they were good enough for the Flintstones they're good enough for a Senator!

Yeah, but it takes weeks to build up the callouses necessary for one trip to the quarry and home. You don't see all of Fred's down-time while he grows those callouses back.

For my money, throwing a rock on a rope out the window is the last word in brake technology.

Re:Boston brakes. (1, Flamebait)

LifesABeach (234436) | about 4 months ago | (#45603293)

Tesla wasn't on the list?! What is the Senator trying to say?

Re:Boston brakes. (2)

pla (258480) | about 4 months ago | (#45603793)

Tesla wasn't on the list?! What is the Senator trying to say?

+500 insightful!

Seriously, a senator wants to know about high-tech exploits, and doesn't ask the single highest tech auto manufacturer in the US today about it? That just screams "Agenda!".

Re:Boston brakes. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45604215)

You're screaming paranoia is what you're doing but go ahead and keep calling it "Agenda!"

Re:Boston brakes. (1)

davester666 (731373) | about 4 months ago | (#45605915)

Tesla MIGHT be the single highest tech auto manufacturer in the US, but they are insignificant [and will be for years] in terms of cars on the road [past, present and future].

Re:Boston brakes. (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 4 months ago | (#45609709)

Uh, guys, the GP AC was making fun of the semiliterate summary: a car's computer system that could cause it to suddenly accelerate, turn or kill the breaks

What is it with you guys and homophones? If you write code like you write English, no wonder software is so buggy.

That said, though, don't blame the slashdot editor or submitter -- it was cut and pasted from the fucking article. Remind me that "the security ledger," being run by aliterates who obviously never finished high school, is NOT a good source of information about anything more important than lolcats. That kind of mistake is forgivable in a slashdot comment or summary, but it is certainly unforgivable by a so-called "professional" writer. I would expect a professional to at least have a BA in English, and what kind of institution will give an English degree to someone who doesn't know the difference between brake and break?

What, are they outsourcing writing, editing, and proofreading now? Or are those professions now obsolete, since nobody reads any more?

I hope (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45602743)

They really said "kill the brakes", not "kill the breaks"

Re:I hope (3, Funny)

tipo159 (1151047) | about 4 months ago | (#45602823)

Follow the links to the actual letter on Markey's site. It really does say "kill the breaks".

Re:I hope (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45603113)

In fact he used the word "breaks" twice in the same paragraph.

Gimme a brake ! (1)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | about 4 months ago | (#45603589)

If the senator thinks that "break" = "brake", we should send him the "Gimme a brake" email to remind him that as a role model (albeit a very crummy one) to the young people, at the very least he should be able to discern "break" from "brake".

Now ... can someone gimme that senator's email address ?

Re:Gimme a brake ! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45603639)

I'm betting that one of those unpaid-intern young people actually wrote the damn thing, or was dictated to.

Re:I hope (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45603373)

Thanks for fact-checking that. I'm not sure I could drive more than 8 hours or so without breaks, so I'm glad the senator has my interests in mind.

Somebody please explain... (1)

c0lo (1497653) | about 4 months ago | (#45603391)

What the (bleep) third pressure technologies are? (car analogies welcomed)

(don't blame the /. editors on this, one of TFA [securityledger.com] has used it

Re:Somebody please explain... (1)

philip.paradis (2580427) | about 4 months ago | (#45605419)

Maybe it's an erroneous interpretation of the acronym TPMS, which is supposed to mean tire-pressure monitoring system [wikipedia.org]. Alternately, it might be some new term meant to introduce tire pressure as a third metric for standard monitoring, in addition to oil and brake fluid pressure levels.

Grumpy? (2, Funny)

bob_super (3391281) | about 4 months ago | (#45602755)

There, get your ... campaign contribution... and stop asking questions.
Just trust us, we know how to build cars and we know how to keep them safe. We're Totally and Extremely Professional and Competent Organizations, you can trust us with stuff that goes boom.

Re:Grumpy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45602841)

LMAO. Nobody gets a break umm.. brake...

Re:Grumpy? (3, Informative)

iiiears (987462) | about 4 months ago | (#45602991)

Have you read what researchers have written about the firmware for phones, your television, your router?

A little poking around Blackhat Convention videos, Bruce Schnier posts and OpenWRT You bet your life it's well worth a few minutes of your time and a letter of support.

  Industry Average: "about 15 - 50 errors per 1000 lines of delivered code. Source www.forbes.com

 

Re:Grumpy? (1)

bob_super (3391281) | about 4 months ago | (#45603133)

I know this is a scary issue that needs to be properly addressed before I can't by a dummy car anymore (I'm currently 100% immune to remote hacking).

I also realize that the senator has an election to win in 11 months.

Re:Grumpy? (1)

Austrian Anarchy (3010653) | about 4 months ago | (#45603439)

I know this is a scary issue that needs to be properly addressed before I can't by a dummy car anymore (I'm currently 100% immune to remote hacking).

I also realize that the senator has an election to win in 11 months.

My vehicles are in the same category as yours. When I get that '72 Charger back on the road it might have some fancy stuff throughout the vehicle, but it will not have any go/stop systems that need to phone home for anything. Hopefully the government will stay out of my life enough to keep it that way too.

Re:Grumpy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45608749)

(I'm currently 100% immune to remote hacking)

I strongly doubt so. I'm pretty sure you're vulnerable to the remote hacking technique involving a gun and bullets directed at your tires.

Re:Grumpy? (2)

Mspangler (770054) | about 4 months ago | (#45604201)

I feel your pain. I bought a second-hand truck with On-Star. They were really eager to turn it on for the three month free trial. then I read the Terms of Service. It was of the type "All possible liabilities shall accrue to you, and any possible benefits shall accrue to us."

It too longer to find the box than it took to pull every connector off of it. Now the terms of service are "You leave me alone and I'll leave you alone." Much more acceptable. Still too much gadgetry on the truck, but at least the remote access connection is no more.

The truck also randomly locks it's own doors for no reason, though rain falling on the switch was clearly implicated once. I had to pop the door panel and apply the wire cutters to make that nonsense stop. And Off isn't off enough to the radio, which pulls down the battery in about 10 days, so now there is an "I mean off dammit" switch on that too. YO! GM! The truck might be parked for three months at a time! The battery should still be able to start it after that! I'll spot you 1 milliamp to run the clock, and that should be it.

2 months is an unofficial industry standard (2)

dutchwhizzman (817898) | about 4 months ago | (#45606195)

Most car manufacturers dimension their batteries such, that a car parked with a full battery should be able to start after 2 months under normal circumstances. If your car only lasts ten days, either your battery or charging circuit isn't working properly, or you indeed have devices in the car that consume too much electricity in standby mode. If your radio is the culprit, it really needs to be replaced. Fortunately, car stereos follow an industry standard form factor and plugs, so replacing that should be easy. Oh wait, they all stopped using that because they wanted to integrate all the car computers with that thing.....

You are forgetting that your engine ECU requires power too. They have quite a few dynamic parameters stored in RAM that you really don't want to store in flash because they are updated every few seconds if the engine is running and you need a quick and easy way to erase them. Maybe modern cars would be able to store them in flash, but the older generations didn't have that luxury and would need to relearn their ignition timing and fuel mixture every time you pulled the plug on them.

Re:Grumpy? (2)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about 4 months ago | (#45606697)

Chances are the On-Star box did more than just contact On-Star. Probably controlled power management for the radio, and allowed remote locking of the vehicle. Since you pulled all the wires out the signals that control those features are now just floating (not connected to anything, subject to any EM interference that comes along) and so appear to randomly malfunction or simply not work at all.

Re:Grumpy? (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 4 months ago | (#45614163)

The truck also randomly locks it's own doors for no reason

My 2002 Chrysler does that, but it's by design -- when the car reaches 15 mph, the doors lock. However, unlike yours, I can easily unlock them.

I know for a fact I couldn't leave mine for a month, the blinking LED on the dash to show that the alarm is armed alone would drag it down (never mind the actual alarm circuits).

Re:Grumpy? (1)

drfreak (303147) | about 4 months ago | (#45604751)

(I'm currently 100% immune to remote hacking)

100% Immune, eh? Mind that air-gap!

Re:Grumpy? (1)

bob_super (3391281) | about 4 months ago | (#45605285)

No audio input either.
I've got the least technology available in any car made in the US after 2010.
Unless you somehow find it a worthwhile challenge to try to reprogram the injection or the gauges by tapping rhythmically on the hood, go and play with my neighbors' easy targets instead.

Re:Grumpy? (1)

semi-extrinsic (1997002) | about 4 months ago | (#45606167)

Out of curiosity, does anyone know how much microwave radiation you have to submit a modern car to before the ECU craps out? I know S-band radar, which is basically what microwave ovens use, can disable an ECU. There are law enforcement agencies using such devices. But I haven't seen any numbers on the mW/cm^2 needed. I do know that brief pulses of 10 mW/cm^2 is the human safety limit for ovens, so it's probably in that ballpark.

So I'm thinking, with a $50 oven magnetron at 1100 W and a parabolic reflector, it shouldn't be hard nor expensive to drive around in an old pre-ECU car randomly disabling other vehicles. You might even be able to do it at a decent range!

We are TEPCO? (check your acronym!) (giggle) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45603577)

Totally and Extremely Professional and Competent Organizations -- Or TEPCO that had the Fukishima disaster!

Stupid Senator (2, Interesting)

Ultra64 (318705) | about 4 months ago | (#45602759)

If you don't know the difference between "breaks" and "brakes", will you really understand the answers to your questions?

Re:Stupid Senator (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45602875)

Gah. I even voted for the guy. Sorry about that.

He speaks truf (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45604245)

That right there is a sign of a true heart-felt apology. He is so ebarassed by his choice to vote for said 'tard that he won't even put his name on it. I believe him!

Re:Stupid Senator (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45603731)

If a typo (or more likely auto-correct-o) makes you stupid, then I must be a raving moron.

This is an important issue well deserving of attention. Whatever other failings the Senator has, he deserves praise for raising this issue.

Re:Stupid Senator (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45604329)

Well when you read most AC posts on here, can you really argue that this site isn't full of raving morons? This AC is no execption!

Re:Stupid Senator (4, Insightful)

hey! (33014) | about 4 months ago | (#45604153)

Ah yes, the culture of "zing". It's much more important to catch a politician (or more likely, one of his staff) in a typo than to pay attention to the substance of what he's written.

My hat's off to you. You, sir, are obviously a genius.

Re:Stupid Senator (1)

CrimsonAvenger (580665) | about 4 months ago | (#45604269)

Ah yes, the culture of "zing". It's much more important to catch a politician (or more likely, one of his staff) in a typo than to pay attention to the substance of what he's written.

If either the pol or one of his staff is semi-literate, why should anyone take him seriously?

Re:Stupid Senator (4, Interesting)

hey! (33014) | about 4 months ago | (#45604341)

Ah yes, the culture of "zing". It's much more important to catch a politician (or more likely, one of his staff) in a typo than to pay attention to the substance of what he's written.

If either the pol or one of his staff is semi-literate, why should anyone take him seriously?

Well, that's begging the question. We don't *know* that Senator Markey or anyone on his staff are illiterate; we only know that they aren't as careful with proofreading as they could be.

That said, I'll attempt to answer your question: because he (or his staff) is raising a serious, important point. That's not enough for you to listen to him? It's not enough that he served thirty years on the House Committee on Communications and Technology either? He (and his staff and the secretarial pool in his office) have to be *infallible* in matters of proofreading before you'll listen?

Re: Stupid Senator (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45607549)

actually, it's MORE than enough that this cocksucker served 30 FUCKING years on this committee. Yet you fuckheads that even bother to show up to vote, keep pulling the lever.

Re:Stupid Senator (0)

slick7 (1703596) | about 4 months ago | (#45604273)

If you don't know the difference between "breaks" and "brakes", will you really understand the answers to your questions?

American tax dollars at work. Shouldn't these bought dogs be looking to balance the budget? I'm sure with all the busy schedules for re-election, trying to make sense of what these bastards are doing to the American people becomes secondary.
These CONgressMEN can only think of eliminating term limits for the presidency. A time will come when someone thinks up a way to eliminate all of THEM once and for all. I on the other hand would rather watch the new Doctor Who, where more reality is evident than what's spewing out of the dung heap in D.C.

Re:Stupid Senator (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 4 months ago | (#45614245)

Shouldn't these bought dogs be looking to balance the budget?

The deficit has been falling for years. [washingtonpost.com]

Re:Stupid Senator (1)

slick7 (1703596) | about 4 months ago | (#45614563)

Shouldn't these bought dogs be looking to balance the budget?

The deficit has been falling for years. [washingtonpost.com]

So has employment, buying power, intelligence levels compared to other countries. On the rise, unemployment, homelessness, death by war, death by starvation, death by out of control policy enforcers.

Stupider Poster (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45604927)

If you don't know the difference between very common homonym confusion and actual lack of understanding, do monkeys eat cantelope?

Re:Stupid Senator (1)

umafuckit (2980809) | about 4 months ago | (#45608635)

If you don't know the difference between "breaks" and "brakes", will you really understand the answers to your questions?

Why not? Typos, missed auto-corrects, or brain-farts aren't a reflection of one's intelligence. I'm sure the the senator knows how a car stops, despite his spelling mistake.

Government would be wise to fear government (1, Informative)

erroneus (253617) | about 4 months ago | (#45602777)

After all, there are factions within government and if one doesn't agree with another, you may find yourself the victim of an unfortunate accident. Only a tiny minority of government gets the secret service and paramilitary police protecting them you know.

Perhaps we are seeing some government players waking up to the reality that even THEY have good reason to fear the government they are participating in.

Awesome (3, Insightful)

onyxruby (118189) | about 4 months ago | (#45602791)

Out do nothing congress is finally doing something useful. These are the kinds of questions we should be asking before problems start to occur and while there are chances to try to introduce standards. It's like the Toyota sudden acceleration thing, everyone assumed it was careless people until someone did a proper audit and discovered a complete lack of industry best practices that everyone assumed had been in place.

Re:Awesome (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45603297)

complete lack of industry best practices that everyone assumed had been in place.

Not this shit again. The toyato unintended accelleration "thing" was exactly what you would expect to happen if you give clueless soccar mom's a car that attempts to make up for what is simple ignorance of mechanical principles. Is "fuel + air + spark = racecar" really that complicated? Let me spell it out for you.

The rubbering thing on the floor, that looks like a giant condom? If you push that into the "go faster pedal", the pedal won't come back up, and will continue to give "go-juice" to the "whoosh-whoosh go fasty thing" under the hood until you dislodge it. The car doesn't give a damn why the "go faster pedal" is touching the "zoom zoom point", nor should it. It only knows that it recieved high air intake, and needs a richer fuel mix to compensate. The correct response to this is to TOUCH the brake to counter the acceleration, and MOVE THE DUMMY LEVER TO N. Then grab a box of kleenex and call the damn tow truck, since you clearly are incapable of dealing with car problems. The people affected by this were people who only knew "push button, move wheel", and really needed to at least attempt to understand how a car works.

I love my sister, but she and one of my coworkers are the same damn way. Despite my best efforts, they can't tell the intake manifold from the battery, nor want to, and complain when the car breaks down and the mechanic cleans them out. Really, if they were to pass any new car regulations, a ban on automatics and CVTs in gasoline or diesel applications would be awesome (Assume CFC style again, with government money flying everywhere). Whoever still has a running car a month in would either be a much better driver, or move very very slow. /rant

Rant's aside, the best regulation that could be passed would be for a purely or at least mostly mechanical car. Fuel air mix, I can see, so probably keep the fuel injection system,(Carbs might work, but they're a pain in the ass to service) though we perfected it by 2000. Entertainment shit is fine, so long as it is fused, and away from the engine. But anti-lock brakes, traction control, and automatic transaxles just make shitty drivers shittier. Really, if you have to think about how fast you want to move the 4000 pound rolling cradle for little Suzy, and your angsty teenager, before you start going that fast, you might just drive a little safer, be able to control it better when something bad does happen.

Re:Awesome (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45604377)

the best regulation that could be passed would be for a purely or at least mostly mechanical car

NO! The best regulation that could be passed is one that makes your ass go to school to learn proper spelling, grammar, reasoning, and logic and make you stay there until you get it right!

though we perfected it by 2000

OOHHHH the derp here! It makes my head hurt.

Really, if you have to think about how fast you want to move the 4000 pound rolling cradle for little Suzy, and your angsty teenager, before you start going that fast, you might just drive a little safer, be able to control it better when something bad does happen.

YOU. SOUND. OLD.

Re:Awesome (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45604967)

The rubbering thing on the floor, that looks like a giant condom? If you push that into the "go faster pedal", the pedal won't come back up, and will continue to give "go-juice" to the "whoosh-whoosh go fasty thing" under the hood until you dislodge it.

If you have dirty condoms on your floorboard that make your gas pedal stick floored, you need to clean the damn thing.

That said, since when have they made cause with giant condoms that can cause your gas pedal to get stuck to the floorboard? The ONLY thing that should be determining whether or not the gas pedal is depressed is the drivers leg/foot; anything that can cause it to get physically stuck is a serious hazard to both the diver and everyone else on the road.

Re:Awesome (1)

sinij (911942) | about 4 months ago | (#45607897)

It was determined in Toyota's case by low-level code analysis that under some very unlikely conditions ECU would lock up until brake pedal is completely released. Seeing how gear shifter is not mechanical, you can see the car not responding to shifting to N. If it happen to be accelerating at this point - well we know how that story ends.

A lot of modern cars no longer have mechanical link to transmission. Buy a stick-shift if you want to be completely safe.

Re:Awesome (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45614751)

It was determined in Toyota's case by low-level code analysis that under some very unlikely conditions ECU would lock up until brake pedal is completely released. Seeing how gear shifter is not mechanical, you can see the car not responding to shifting to N. If it happen to be accelerating at this point - well we know how that story ends.

Right, but you can still stop the car by pressing on the brake. Anyone who says there were braking hard and the car kept accelerating had their foot on the gas. This analysis doesn't change that fact one bit.

Re:Awesome (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45603649)

Yeah that was a shock. There needs to be a mandatory audit trail with public filed records for all automotive computer systems that are in control of critical systems like braking and steering and throttle. The FAA demands as much for aviation and don't know why it should be any different for cars.

Keep in mind that they didn't prove that Toyota's computer systems caused the car problems, but they did find that there was gross negligence and a complete disregard for safe programming practices for critical systems.

Tell him to pound sand (2, Insightful)

alvinrod (889928) | about 4 months ago | (#45602811)

I'd tell him to pound sand until he can provide some answers about privacy protections and safeguards preventing the government from illegally spying on its citizens.

Dear Senator (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45602947)

Dear Senator:

Thank you, most kindly for your fine letter. At this time we would like to encourage you to FOAD! Who the heck do you think you are? You have no authority and are in no position to demand anything! Please feel free to review the three branch system of the United States government.

TTFN

P.S. Our cyber-security is 185% because we make it form pure ground unicorn horn.

why not pass the buck and make the uses pay (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | about 4 months ago | (#45602993)

why not pass the buck and make the uses pay for the dealer to do the updates and lock out DIY'er and 3rd party shops.

My reply would be (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45602995)

Sir, our vehicles are just as secure as healthcare.gov.

Re:My reply would be (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45603369)

Vehicles are probably more secure since the target is one vehicle vs a website with thousands of prepackaged identity theft victims.

If only Senator Markey... (1, Insightful)

Bartles (1198017) | about 4 months ago | (#45603049)

...showed as much interest in the security of Healthcare.gov, we might actually get somewhere. But of course, why worry about the security of a Big Government project, when you have some evil corporations to kick around.

are you an automaker shill? (1)

Gravis Zero (934156) | about 4 months ago | (#45604417)

there wasn't a car analogy for healthcare.gov security. i'm guessing someone made a car analogy about his car.

"Proof of Concept" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45603083)

These vulnerabilities have been demonstrated far beyond "proof of concept". I attended the presentation of a paper two years ago with documented examples of the remote take-over of BlueTooth enabled vehicles. It is a serious threat to road safety, among other things, and needs to be addressed, not with governmental legislation or regulation, but with ethical engineering practices and responsible implementation. Does anyone remember Computer Programmers for Social Responsibility (CPSR)?

For fucks' sake... (2)

acoustix (123925) | about 4 months ago | (#45603381)

Stop calling everything computer related "cyber".

Re:For fucks' sake... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45604807)

Stop calling everything computer related "cyber".

THANK YOU!

Re:For fucks' sake... (1)

Virtucon (127420) | about 4 months ago | (#45606941)

we shall now call it 'e' or 'i'. Wait, we've used those vowels. I suggest "y"

yAttack..

yDoit

I like it.

Re:For fucks' sake... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45608847)

But it is cool to type cybermessages on cyberkeyboards! Just typing messages on keyboards is so boring ... ;-)

Brought to you by the Anonymous Cybercoward.

Mandated wireless (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45604185)

Well the government mandated tire pressure monitoring which is done wirelessly. The tech wasn't selling well so some companies enjoyed the mandate. I prefer passive monitoring which can be done by the brake system without extra cost in sensors and RF signals.

Michael Hastings (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45605727)

It's nice to see a US Senator finally taking an interest in how Michael Hastings was killed.

Automakers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45606099)

I feel technology becomes crazy. In the next few years, will the computing power of a plane be necessary to drive over 20 km??? Sometimes I miss the old European cars like VW Beetle, Citroen 2CV ou Renault 4L... Hyper-simple technology, ridiculous costs and fuel consumption, very easy maintenance and repair... they were quite enough for daily use, especially in the Berlin, Paris or London traffic jams.
There is a big political question: in the future, will we need hyper-technological monsters, or low-cost and fuel-saving cars? IMHO, Darwin will be right, dinosaurs will disappear and little agile mammals will win.

Re:Automakers (1)

Virtucon (127420) | about 4 months ago | (#45606963)

Electrically heated seats are underrated. Now you can get cooling seats. All the rest, GPS, complicated, vendor-locked in car entertainment, OnStar (which I ripped out of my car) are all wastes of money. It's getting so that you can't find cars (except very small, low-end models) that have hand crank windows.

Bean Counter Effect (1)

ThatsNotPudding (1045640) | about 4 months ago | (#45606703)

I suspect - just like most industries providing consumer goods - the automotive engineers knew about and pointed out the potential of such vulnerabilities, only to be ignored by their PHBs and their R&D budgets for said issues zeroed-out by the true bosses: Bean Counters.

20 major car manufacturers? (1)

Virtucon (127420) | about 4 months ago | (#45606931)

let's see.. According to Forbes... [forbes.com] In order of sales here's the largest 11 in the world.

VW
Toyota
Daimler
Ford
BMW
GM
Nissan
Honda
Hyndai
SAIC (Chinese)

The top 10 up there represent the major manufacturers that sell cars in the US other than Tesla and Fisker is about dead anyway [delawareonline.com].. SAIC doesn't sell anything in the US, so really what's the other 8 on his list? Some guy in a garage building kit cars?

Re:20 major car manufacturers? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45607343)

That would be parent companies, you can still break out sub companies. The forbes list doesn't do that. VW covers Audi, Hyundai includes Kia, etc.

Re:20 major car manufacturers? (1)

PhloppyPhallus (250291) | about 4 months ago | (#45609837)

That list omits a few more or less independent automarkers. For US market examples, where are Mazda, Subaru, Mitsubishi, Suzuki and Chrysler?

Re:20 major car manufacturers? (1)

Virtucon (127420) | about 4 months ago | (#45610391)

Chrysler is now Fiat so they're not independent but I agree that the others aren't listed but again, that list was the top 10 worldwide. I'm thinking the good senator probably didn't realize that Chrysler and Fiat are one in the same (thanks to the current administration) and that Hyundai also owns Kia for example. I imagine there's a lot of duplication in his list. Having worked in software in automotive electronics for a short time awhile back (MSFT AutoPC... don't ask..) I can tell you that vulnerability testing wasn't considered until very late in the game and then the customer decided that it wasn't needed. Of course this was 13 years ago.

Silly question... (1)

Dcnjoe60 (682885) | about 4 months ago | (#45607193)

Among the questions Markey wants answers to: What percentage of cars sold in model years 2013 and 2014 do not have any wireless entry points?

Zero, all cars have wireless entry points. They are called windows, doors and vents and probably a few others.

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