6 Ways to Protect Your Car from Being Hacked

There are quite a few ways someone can hack your car. Nowadays, vehicles have multiple control modules that could be hacked through different networks and channels.

Security experts have already showed how the threat is very real as they experimented and proved how real the threat is. Back in 2014, the security experts tried a test for researching purposes, and managed to hack a Jeep Cherokee, remotely, they managed to tamper with the radio, wipers, motor and even the brakes! and the testing didn’t end there.

Protect Your Car from Being Hacked

Image by Alison Chaiken

A few months ago, the same team targeted the very same Jeep and the results were much darker. They managed to bypass many security features and connect to the car remotely and not only brake the vehicle at high speeds but also turn the steering wheel! The manufacturers managed to fix that issue, but researchers advise it is only a matter of time until a different flaw is found, so we have put together the 6 best ways to protect your vehicle from such attacks.

  1. Install a GPS tracker. Although a car GPS tracker cannot stop your car from being hacked, it can help you if your car is actually compromised via hacking and someone takes off with your car. The trackers will help you locate your vehicle and bring the hackers to justice.
  2. Keep your vehicle’s software up to date. Sometimes you will receive notifications about updating your vehicle’s internal software. You must ensure that these updates have come from the manufacturer and not some malware or phishing attacks. You can check this by looking on the official website as they always advise on any updates. Updates are normally added by an USB that was send through the mail.
  3. Check for vehicle recalls.  Lots of vehicles have been recalled back to the manufacturer due to the vulnerabilities of hacking. If you car is one of the models on the recall list, you should’ve received some kind of notification advising you on the steps you need to make and how to resolve the issue at no extra cost. There is also a great website, safercar.gov where you can check to see if your vehicle is on the recall list.
  4. Never modify your vehicle’s software. Once you start tampering with the software of your vehicle, you could accidently switch off something that could leave your car’s software wide open to hacking attacks.
  5. Be careful about connecting third-party devices to your car. Be extremely careful when adding third party devices to your vehicle. There are a few diagnostic ports within the vehicle that allow you to connect all kinds of connectivity. Once these devices are plugged in, they can be used for the hackers to access your car remotely.
  6. Know who has the keys to your car. This might seem like an obvious one, but if your car keys get into the wrong hands, who knows what damage can be done? The only way to ensure nobody can connect anything to your vehicle is to  know who has access 100% of the time.
Drew Hendricks covers the newest technology and makes it easy to understand. He ghostwrites and creates native advertising for automotive startups as well as major media outlets.