Can you imagine driving your brand new electric car around the city and suddenly the doors pop open? That is what hackers proved they could do in a test or challenge at the University of Zhejiang in China. The Tesla Electric Model S hacked and had its doors popped while moving at speed. This would be a scary even if it was not a test run by Tesla as a challenge to improve the security of their car.
The Tesla Electric Model S test was run at the University of Zhejiang with a top prize of $10,000 designed to use hackers help the Tesla team find out what they needed to do to improve the security of their car. If the doors can be popped, it can also be stolen using the same techniques and this is something that Tesla does not want to be known for.
Tesla Electric Model S
Tesla supported the idea of testing and developing better security. As our cars become more and more electric and run by computers with communications tethers to various devices needed to support the car and report operating status it will become increasingly important these cars cannot be hacked. Take Googles driver less car as an example. Using a combination of sensors, GPS and communications abilities it is fully electronic and prone to hacking. All of these vehicles are at risk unless more tests are run like the one on the Tesla Electric model S electric car.
There is a strong need to get this resolved prior to the market being inundated with electric vehicles. We are only at the beginning of a new era where electric vehicles replace the combustion drive cars. We need to get this right.
Why is this only limited to electric vehicles? This is another question that we wonder about. Many old technology cars burning gasoline are also linked to satellites and are now offering WiFi connections. Is it possible for these cars to also be taken over and controlled. We do not know the answer, and would be happy for someone to let us know if traditional powered cars can also be hacked?