3/23/2016

Hackers Trick Keyless Ignition Systems

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German researchers have shown how hackers can trick a car's keyless entry system into responding to a key fob 300 or more feet away, WirtschaftsWoche reports.

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German researchers have shown how hackers can trick a car's keyless entry system into responding to a key fob 300 or more feet away, WirtschaftsWoche reports.

The technique would enable a thief to unlock, start and drive away a car whose key fob is in the owner's pocket inside a nearby home, store or restaurant.

Tests by Munich-based auto club ADAC show such "amplification attacks" can open at least two dozen models made by 19 manufacturers.

At-risk systems include virtually any vehicle with a fob that enables its operator to unlock the car's doors and start the engine without removing the fob from a pocket or purse. The hack uses one radio device to detect and rebroadcast a fob's signal to a second device that mimics the actual fob.

ADAC says a hacker could build an amplification attack device for a few hundred dollars. The club also says there is no easy cure to the problem for current owners of vehicles that use keyless fobs. One suggestion: store the fob in a metal box to block its signal from detection.