Safety & Accident

GM's OnStar Hacked, Volt Engine Started

July 31, 2015

Screenshot via Samy Kamkar/YouTube.
Screenshot via Samy Kamkar/YouTube.

A hacker has found a security vulnerability in General Motors' OnStar mobile app that allowed him to locate a Chevrolet Volt, unlock the vehicle, and start its engine.

Samy Kamkar used a $100 Wi-Fi device to perform the hack for Wired, which published the story a week after another story about two security researchers who hacked a Jeep Cherokee and stopped it by the side of a road.

Kamkar exploited a vulnerability in the OnStar mobile app by using a box with three radios and a Raspberry Pi computer that he hid on the vehicle that, when placed in proximity to the vehicle's driver, can trick the user's phone into impersonating a friendly Wi-Fi network.

Watch Kamkar's video here.

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