Auto maker General Motors today announced a recall of some 1.4 million cars in which a known oil leak problem can cause engine fires. All of the affected vehicles are over 10 years old, and the oldest were model year 1997.
It's Back to the Future day, the day in 2015 that Marty McFly travels to in the distant hoverboard future. Hoverboards remain nonexistent-to-bullshit, but Thinkgeek does make a very nice $25 Flux Capacitor car-lighter USB charger with one 1A USB port and two 2.1A ports, as well as a credible animated light-show (which you can turn off when the novelty wears off). Read the rest
The use of the term "accident" gives cops and courts the cover to excuse murder. In a brutal editorial, Hsi-Pei Liao talks about his daughter, who was killed by a driver when she was three. The driver got a ticket for failure to yeild and failure to use due care, and those tickets were eventually thrown out by a DMV judge who considered the case for 47 seconds. Read the rest
There's always some kind of mess in my car. Spilled coffee, greasy hands, fogged-up or bird-pooped-on windows. I usually fumble around for whatever paper napkins I might have stashed away, but then I saw Quickie microfiber towel 24-packs on Amazon for $10. They turned out to be a way better solution. Read the rest
VW's diesel firmware detected when it was undergoing emissions testing and changed the engine tuning to produce 1/40 of its normal toxic output, fooling regulators. But though they're the only ones who've been caught using firmware to game emissions testing, they're not the only ones with something to hide. Read the rest
This is a thing that people do. No wait, this is a thing that men who are completely insane do. But it's very entertaining stuff on YouTube, so I hope they keep doing it.
The EPA has accused Volkswagen of rigging its software to cheat the agency's diesel emissions standards so that its cars could be on the road while spewing 40 times the legal limit for diesel emissions. Read the rest
Sean Gallagher's long, comprehensive article on the state of automotive infosec is a must-read for people struggling to make sense of the summer's season of showstopper exploits for car automation, culminating in a share-price-shredding 1.4M unit recall from Chrysler, whose cars could be steered and braked by attackers over the Internet. Read the rest
UCSD computer scientist Stefan Savage and colleagues will present their work at Usenix Security: they were able to disable the brakes on a 2013 Corvette by breaking into a Mobile Devices/Metromile Pulse dongle, used by insurance companies to monitor driving in exchange for discounts on coverage. Read the rest
Chrysler, whose Jeep Cherokees were demonstrated to be vulnerable to Internet-based attacks on their steering and brakes (as well as radios, air conditioning and other systems) has recalled 1.4M cars due to software vulnerabilities. Read the rest