Consumer Alert: hacking car computer systems - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

Consumer Alert: hacking car computer systems

One company will soon offer inexpensive protection for drivers who are concerned about hackers breaking into their cars' computer systems.

"The research activities that have been going on have been focused on the systems back here (in the car) that focus on driving in an automated mode," said David Drescher, CEO of Mission Secure Inc. 

Mission Secure Inc. has worked closely with Perrone Robotics on an automated car that is used to test the device to protect your vehicle. This problem is not a big deal yet but could be soon and Drescher knows it.

"To date there are no known cyber-attacks that have taken place against cars, but certainly many cyber attacks that have taken place against all types of systems," said Drescher.

According to Drescher, Homeland Security reported more than 250 hacking incidents against machines in 2015. He knows cars are the next victim.

"A car is a great example. They were not designed to defend against advanced cyber attacks," said Drescher.

Some of these cyber attacks could take control of your car and prevent it from slowing down.

"Some of the stuff we can do is kind of scary," said Ed Suhler, Vice President of implementation services at Mission Secure Inc. "Because you really see how easy is it to get into the technologies that we use every day, to see what's going on in the system, and to make changes inside the system."

Mission Secure Inc. is working on a computer that does five duties: monitors your car, detects a problem, informs the driver, fixes the problem, and diagnoses what happened.

The company is working on a design that would allow the driver to plug the car into a device that connects to a smartphone to help prevent cyber attacks.

"What we're doing is we're trying to take our technology and make it stronger, better and more cost-effective so it's affordable for everybody's car," said Drescher. 

The company is working to get the product into all new cars in the United States, and be available to consumers for existing vehicles in September 2016 for about $15.

Click here for more information on the potential threat of hackers on your vehicle.

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