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DARPA Computer Geek Talks About Hacking Cars

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posted on Jun, 23 2013 @ 07:03 PM
reply to post by hounddoghowlie

Brake by wire means you press a pedal who's position is read electronically which is then used to apply the brakes.

Apparently some Mercs used this system for a while before its use was stopped Autoweek

But yes ABS can bypass brake pressure. And it should be a relatively simple job to look up what ABS controller a car has, get the same model and reverse engineer what it does. You could then reprogram the controller over the CAN bus to do what you want. It could monitor speed and.turns and bypass the brakes at a critical time....

I forgot about the ABS controller in my original post, it can still take control even though brakes are still hydraulically linked to the pedal.

posted on Jun, 23 2013 @ 07:54 PM
Throttle by wire is very common now
you can tell if it has it right away by the lag in response after
you step on the gas, or try to pass and then let off,. car doesnt react
as fast as linkage

posted on Jun, 23 2013 @ 10:15 PM
post removed for serious violation of ATS Terms & Conditions

posted on Jun, 23 2013 @ 10:33 PM
It's absolutely true you can fiddle with auto bluetooth. At one time there was a way to listen in to your car's interior BT mike from the next car over, you just had to stay real close in the chase car.

As far as that goes, I've seen a program that could dump the info from your cell phone by exploiting the BT stack.

I've seen demos of taking over auto systems by installing a module onto the car's control bus. You could fiddle with the brakes by issuing ABS and stability control commands and on some cars you could command wide open throttle too. All you needed was to snap a little plastic widget into the diagnostic port. It looked like any other car module, you'd never know it wasn't supposed to be there.

posted on Jun, 23 2013 @ 10:41 PM
The 2nd and 3rd generation Toyota Prius use "brake-by-wire" and "throttle-by-wire". The brakes have a backup full hydraulic system via the same master cylinder actuation that is supposed to kick in should the electronics fail. I know, you are probably wondering why have by wire then and the answer for the Prius has to do with the fact that the motor/generator unit MG1 has a power splitting mechanism which is basically a large planetary gear unit and if you were to lock up the drive axles with the gasoline engine running, you could hit a point where the engine revolutions on the sun gear do not come close to the speed of the output shaft connected to the out put of this gear unit. That is a very bad condition which could lead to a complete trashing of the gearbox.

What does happen is the cars ECM gets a signal from the break pedal that tells it how much you've pressed and how fast you've pressed the brakes. The ECM then sends signals to the power splitter and the Regenerative Braking module /Hybrid Inverter and IGBT's to reverse the power flow to the electric drive motor and allow the electric drive to become a generator by shutting off the inverter and using the IGBT's to steer current back into the batteries and across some resistive loads /shunts as dumps to absorb power and slow the car. Since this is done to through the front wheels only, the rear brakes are actuated via wire and electro-hydraulic servo valves to maintain the optimum front/rear braking ratio.

As the batteries fill up or as more braking need is sensed and if the engine RPM is in a safe range with respect to the drive axle RPM's (final gear ratio accounted for) the ECM will divert more hydraulic to the front.

The throttle works in similar fashion as it needs to direct whether to open the butterfly on the ICE (internal combustion engine) or to send electricity to the Motor/Generator (MG1) or both.

There may be others but the Prius is one for sure.... of course thanks to that system my 2004 has 220k on its first set of brakes. They use ceramic pads and they have about 85% wear on the fronts and almost time to do the back shoes.
edit on 23-6-2013 by evc1shop because: spelling

posted on Jun, 23 2013 @ 11:04 PM
reply to post by Bedlam
There are all sorts of WIFI ways to connect to a cars OBD (On board Diagnostic) for cars from 96 and up that use the OBD-II system.

It is up to the designer of the car to allow you access the diagnostic portions of the system. There are various protocols but not all of them are accessible from every one of these devices. Some just let you monitor the systems and reset the "check engine" light. Some of the diagnostic like a wide open throttle that may be performed to test for a blocked catalytic converter or a stuck Air Bypass Valve or something may not be allowed to access unless you have started the car in a particular sequence. I can't perform a cylinder balance test on my Mustang while driving on the highway.

The manufacturers of the cars probably don't consider that someone might have one of these to attach to a vehicle and ruin someone's day but they do take reasonable precautions so that ordinary folks don't accidentally, or on purpose, force a transmission shift at a wrong RPM or something while playing with the OBD system.

That said, the devious can find ways to get things done.

posted on Jun, 24 2013 @ 12:03 AM
reply to post by Nucleardiver

Unfortunately, what we do need however is more fuel efficient engines... Which time has provided and unfortunately, with these advents, comes the need for computer control.

reply to post by EasyPleaseMe

Not true, I have been recently looking up new vehicles as a possible new purchase with the focus on fuel efficiency.
Now please don't shoot the messenger, as I have looked at these two makes recently and I can't remember which or both have this feature;
Volvo S60/S80 and Tesla Model S.

I believe one of or both of these have a safety driving feature that when detects the speed of traffic change, it changes the cruise control speed as well. With this feature, it also has the ability to sense pedestrian traffic and slow the vehicle down.
Now it did state that the feature wouldn't stop the car at a red light... But I think that is a limitation of insufficient information that the car doesn't know there is a red light.

But the point is, that doesn't really matter, because if you can hack into the cars computer control system, you'd be able to trick it into thinking an accident has occurred and tell it to slam on the brakes.
Or, inversely, pick up speed.

I have no doubts that they can control modern cars.
And as the first reply to Nucleardiver, we need more fuel efficient cars and that comes at a cost.

Just as a side note, the European version of the Volvo S60 (Diesel) gets 71mpg.
Or to us Aussies that use KM, that is roughly 30km/l.
With a fuel tank of 67.5L, that is a range of just over 2,000 kms!
edit on 24/6/2013 by Sovaka because: ETA Volvo S60 Diesel version.

posted on Jun, 24 2013 @ 01:35 AM
I was going to post a thread about this, but I see the job's already done.

Here's back-up proof: A 2010 U of W study that shows that yes, all of the electronic systems in your new car can be easily hacked. The original story seems to be gone, but "Rebel" has provided a downloadable PDF of the findings. I'm not a techie, but it looks pretty legit.

posted on Jun, 24 2013 @ 02:01 AM
reply to post by Snsoc

thanks for that link!

also S & F to burntheships for this important thread!

posted on Jun, 24 2013 @ 03:06 AM
A coincidence, seems less likely. Research is showing that it's possible, so why not if someone or some group wanted to silence him? If anything at all, saying his car was not controlled, speeding as the dash cam shows, he was may have thought he was being followed and or family, friend or himself was threatened. That is as opposed to being intoxicated* as an example to why as someone would speed out of control, or feel they need to speed(50 plus mph?) in a city neighborhood that is probably up to 35 mph speed limit.

Couple questions; the cars black box as it is reported in the media that if 96% of newer cars have black boxes, then it is likely his, a late model Mercedes-Benz C250, did? What may it reveal? If the info is brought forth-if not hacked also, considering that is what happened or hidden.

Also, perhaps did he escape the car-far fetched, and or decoy body added to the car and he was placed into hiding ? News says the coroner identified the body as Hastings but did not indicate how he was identified- such as by plates, DL(likely burned up?), family/friends, teeth, etc.

Black Boxes in Cars
Black Boxes Fact vs Fiction
* Multiple sources say it's unlikely he was drunk and/or on drugs
edit on 24-6-2013 by dreamingawake because: (no reason given)

posted on Jun, 24 2013 @ 07:36 AM
reply to post by Sovaka

Actually you don't need computers to achieve high MPG on an internal combustion engine. There was a man named Smokey Yunick that achieved 190 HP and over 51 MPG out of a GM 2.5L 4 cylinder in the early 80's. The problem with any Otto Cycle internal combustion engine is that the volumetric efficiency of the engine is only about 25%. This means that only 25% of the iar fuel mixture is converted to mechanical energy through the combustion process and the remaining 75% is lost throught the exhaust.

Yunick designed a system that preheated the fuel to over 400 degress, turning the fuel into a vapor and thereby increasing the atomization of the air/fuel mixture resulting in better flame propagation and in turn a cleaner burn and an extreme increase in the volumetric efficiency.

While todays computer controlled engines are designed to run with a stoichiometric air/fuel ratio of 14.6:1, Smokey's Hot Vapor engines would achieve a stoichiometric air/fuel ratio upwards of 20%. This resulted in much higher MPG and and power gains upward of 1.8 HP per cubic inch of displacement along with greatly reduced exhaust emissions due to a much cleaner burn within the combustion chamber.

Smokey had began working on his Hot Vapor fuel system as far back as the late 60's and in the eraly 80's he had applied for a patent on his design through the US Patent Office. Unfortunately the patent application was denied and much of Yunick's knowledge of his Hot Vapor fuel system was taken to his grave when he died.

There is still much interest by hotrod enthusiasts of Yunicks design and many people have attempted to copy his design or improve upon it with success. However we will never see a naturally aspirated non computer managed ICE released for mass production due to the fact that the designers have realized that they can sell these modern over priced and much less dependable pieces of crap they produce today and people will buy them.

As long as they can get away with robbing the people and selling us junk they will continue to do so. The designers don't care about dependability, longevity, or low cost they care about profits.

Info on Smokey Yunick can be found HERE

posted on Jun, 24 2013 @ 07:50 AM
.....Car starts doing sh!t on its own... I turn the ignition key off ! If that doesn't work..Good thing I have installed a kill switch on the main positive battery wire.

Problem solved.

posted on Jun, 24 2013 @ 07:51 AM
reply to post by Nucleardiver

Smokey Yunick...One of NASCAR's greats !!! Thanks for posting that !!

edit on 24-6-2013 by Nuke2013 because: (no reason given)

posted on Jun, 24 2013 @ 08:02 AM
reply to post by Nuke2013

He was a great man and quite the engineer when it came to engines. I met him quite a few times before his death, he was in the same antique car club as my dad in Daytona. He helped my dad with the restoration of a 1969 Jaguar XKE Roadster and going to his shop and seeing his various projects was truly amazing, some of the cars he had were quite rare and in true Smokey style were pretty awesome.

posted on Jun, 24 2013 @ 04:11 PM
I suppose that's one advantage to having a somewhat older car.

For mine they'd need physical access to flash the computer (presumably via the OBD-II connector under the dash), and the most they could do is screw up the fuel and transmission shift tables and things like whether the EGR or AC cycles. And I doubt there's much they could do to the ABS. Throttle plate is still mechanical, so even if they wanted to give it gas in an unexpected way it would only run poorly if I let off of it since the little idle air control valve can only do so much.

New cars likely have a whole can of worms in terms of remote access, but that's probably been around since OnStar with it's extra "security" features. (Not all bad mind you, but the capability to abuse them is there.) I'd also guess having full drive-by-wire makes the control loop completely vulnerable to hacking depending on how the system is designed.

posted on Jun, 24 2013 @ 04:38 PM
All those people who accosted me for driving cars built before Command Control Modules, maybe time to eat your words? I'm glad I buy vehicles I can work on.

Word of advice to whistle blowers. If you drive a modern car, you may be making a mistake. Though, the brakes and steering can not be controlled via remote, most modern cars use a by-wire throttle system, I've never trusted those anyway. I like having a physical cable from the gas pedal to the throttle body.

posted on Jun, 24 2013 @ 04:44 PM
reply to post by Nucleardiver

Thank God someone other than me knows about Smokey Yunick's Hot Air Engines.

On another note, computers aren't needed to produce good fuel mileage. I used to have a 1960 Rambler American with a 196 Cubic Inch inline flathead 6 cylinder. It was only 90 horsepower, but it was a fairly light car with lots of room for the passengers and a decently sized trunk. It got 32 mpg on the highway with it's 3 speed transmission.

posted on Jun, 24 2013 @ 05:05 PM
reply to post by Nucleardiver

That's awesome! Thanks for the info... I will look into that some more.

posted on Jun, 24 2013 @ 05:23 PM
That's why I still drive Lada ...

Pretty scary stuff , soon we will be electrified or driving remote hydrogen bombs in our own cars if clean fuels kick in...

posted on Jun, 24 2013 @ 05:26 PM
Ive been talking about this for some while, and refuse to buy a newer car because of the tech in them.

All newer cars are lojacked. If you are driving, you can be located.

On top of that, the idea of a override switch in the computer brain of the car is very reasonable, and very feasible. With that, the possibilities are endless. Remote hacking, power loss, critical safety device loss...its all doable.

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