The reported attacks on smart cars over the past four years have increased sixfold, according to a study.
‘Uber’ or ‘Car2Go’ are excellent transport options. Unfortunately, hackers can take advantages of the weaknesses of the applications.
Scammers in China used fake accounts to make free trips – a phenomenon known as ‘ghost travel’. It sounds like a ghost is travelling with the profile of someone else. A man in Australia was able to perform more than 30 free trips in the GoGet carpooling platform.
An investigation by the cybersecurity platform of Upstream Security Ltd reveals that attacks on smart cars have increased sixfold in the last four years. Companies have taken notice and implemented corrective measures. Daimler AG has beefed up the security measures of its car-sharing platform, Car2Go, after piracy of a limited number of accounts. Juniper Research forecasted that the connected cars would double to 773 million by 2023. With the convenience of features such as keyless entry, applications to turn on the heater remotely and connecting smartphones through Bluetooth, the risks related to vehicle cybercrime will only get worse.
The entry points for hackers
“Each new service connected to a vehicle is a new potential entry point for hackers.” Upstream wrote in a report published recently. “The worst scenarios are the loss of commercial profits, theft, the privacy of data or damage to property.”
Automakers, from Mercedes-Benz, Daimler AG to Toyota Motor Corp., are looking for digital services as potentially lucrative additional revenue sources.
Car manufacturers have to keep up with growing competition from entities such as Uber Technologies Inc. For instance, Daimler AG and BMW are combining their car sharing platforms. These ventures are to create a much broader set of services. So as to integrate a transportation application, electric car charging and digital parking services.
Shared car platforms lack adequate protection, said cybersecurity and antivirus vendor Kaspersky Lab. The firm came up with this conclusion after testing 13 applications from Russia, the United States and Europe. Most of them allowed weak passwords, did not protect against reverse engineering and did not stop phishing attempts. However, there was no indication of the services tested.
Uber, the route application that is preparing a sale of public shares, has introduced security features such as two-step login verification.
“We have complete systems and organisations in Uber with the ability to detect this type of fraudulent activity,” Uber told Bloomberg News in a statement. “Criminals will continue to try new ways to get what they want, and we must constantly respond to their evolving techniques. The fight against fraud never ends. “