As many of you know, I’m a car guy just as much as I am a technology guy. Back in 98 I had a full pc in my car playing Mp3s with a 20×2 LCD touch screen and I’ve already proven I ran replace my keys with RFID, so needless to say I love the convergence of technology and automobiles. But this one actually scares me. This week OnStar (the GM in vehicle cell service) announced that they’ve paired with law enforcement to slow down your vehicle if it’s stolen or involved in a high speed chase.
While initially it sounds cool and helps to ensure your car doesn’t end up upside down or in a guard rail during a chase, what worries me is the system itself.Â Every OnStar vehicle is essentially equipped with a cell phone that has access to the onboard ECM, PCM, etc.Â The last gen GM vehicles were supposed to be highly secured so that no one except GM could tune them.Â Well the codes were cracked within a couple months and the aftermarket tuners are off and running.Â I can just envision this system being cracked and having thousandsÂ of GM vehicles disabled on our freeways during rush hour.Â I’m sure OnStar has spent millions on their design to make sure this doesn’t happen, but as we know, don’t tell a geek he can’t do something because he’ll throw your millions in code out the window with a simple embarrassing back door.
If anyone at GM is listening I’d be more than happy spending a weekend looking through the code making sure there aren’t any issues 😉