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Can a Virus Hitch a Ride in Your Car?

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posted on Mar, 13 2005 @ 10:51 AM
That frightening prospect has had Internet message boards buzzing this year, amid rumors that a virus had infected Lexus cars and S.U.V.'s. The virus supposedly entered the cars over the Bluetooth wireless link that lets drivers use their cellphones to carry on hands-free conversations through the cars' microphones and speakers.

The Lexus tale, based on murky reporting and a speculative statement by Kaspersky Labs, a Moscow antivirus company, seems to have been unfounded. "Lexus and its parent companies, Toyota Motor Sales USA Inc. and Toyota Motor Corporation in Japan, have investigated this rumor," the carmaker said in a statement last month, "and have determined it to be without foundation."

While this is refuted by the Auto Manufacturers, the possibility is quite real in the near future. Almost all cars now have integrated computer systems for everything in the car.

For example, the Farrari has had an internet connection for several years. Just plug it in, and it will dial home for an automated tune up.

The latest versions of in-car information systems, known as telematics, include the ability to diagnose vehicle maladies. General Motors' OnStar can forward readings from sensors throughout the car for troubleshooting, a process called remote diagnostics. (All G.M. cars will include OnStar by the end of 2007.)

New York Times

So new car buyers, caveat emptor !!!

posted on Mar, 13 2005 @ 12:49 PM
There was somethign similar to this with mobile phones, smart phones, the rumour also stemmed from a russian anti-virus company. They were able to infect a mobile phone with a virus, but only in controlled conditions. They only managed it once 'out in the wild'. Due to all the hype about mobile phones being 'hacked' via the bluetooth stack the manufacturers have really clamped down all the security holes in the bluetooth software (but I'm sure there's plenty more to be found out there) so I suspect it's highly unlikely. Also, most bluetooth devices only work when they're within a 10m radius so someone would have to be pretty close to upload anything.

But nothing can match human stupidty. With near all bluetooth devices these days you actually have to authorise the downloading of files from other devices. so if people don't go authorising files left right and center then this shouldn't be much of a problem.

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