Ford Focus and VW Polo can be easily hacked


A study by Which? published on April 9, says two of the best-selling cars in Europe, made by Ford and Volkswagen, have serious digital security flaws. If exploited by hackers, they would jeopardize the privacy of owners and the safety of drivers and passengers.

The cars mentioned by the publication are the Ford Focus Titanium Automatic 1.0 and the VW Polo SEL TSI Manual 1.0, both powered by gasoline. Both models would have vulnerabilities that could expose personal data of car owners and facilitate access to the on-board computer.

At Focus, the researchers said it was possible to intercept and falsify messages from the tire pressure monitoring system, using a notebook and another accessory found in online stores. With that, it would be possible to report incorrect information to the user about the status of the tires or even use the vulnerability to track the vehicle’s location.

At Polo, Which? claims to have managed to hack the car’s infotainment system, accessing the list of calls made by the cell phone connected via Bluetooth and various other types of data. In addition, the exploitation of the fault also allowed to activate and deactivate the traction system, increasing the risk of accidents in certain track conditions.

What the automakers said
In contact with the British magazine, Ford said that tire pressure sensors have a short range, requiring the attacker to be very close to the vehicle to access them, making remote attacks difficult. The American automaker also said that the technology is widely used in the auto industry and has never presented problems.

For its part, Volkswagen revealed that its information and entertainment system works separately from other crucial systems of the car and cannot influence them without going unnoticed. Despite this, the German brand confirmed that it is analyzing the findings made by Which ?.


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