A 19-year-old hacker says he managed to remotely hack 25 different Tesla cars in 13 countries. Among the functions he managed to enable are radio, headlights and even starting. The teenager, named David Colombo, said he was an IT expert from Germany.
Despite tweeting that he had “full remote control” of the cars, he clarified that he was never able to take over the vehicles. Despite this, he confirmed that he was able to disable the anti-theft systems and check whether a driver was inside the car.
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“Yes, I could potentially unlock the doors and start driving affected Teslas,” he tweeted. “No, I can’t intervene with someone driving (other than turning music on full volume or flashing lights) and I can’t drive these Teslas remotely either.”
He went on to say that the hack is “not a vulnerability in Tesla’s infrastructure”, but rather “owners’ faults”.
Columbus claimed on Twitter that he was able to disable Sentry Mode – anti-theft technology in which a car camera becomes a de facto alarm system.
After his post went viral, people at Tesla contacted him. Last year, Tesla CEO Elon Musk promised he would work with governments to ensure that personal data of drivers of their cars is safe from the threat of hackers.
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