"Toyota, Ford and GM have deliberately hidden the dangers associated with car computer systems, misleading consumers," Stanley said in a statement.Interesting. One of the problems with Security efforts in the past is that it's been impossible to quantify the benefit. This looks to assign a dollar value to that.
The suit claims that vehicles without proper electronics safeguards are "defective" and worth far less than similar non-defective vehicles and seeks unspecified monetary damages and injunctive relief.
The lawsuit claims hackers could access ECUs on a vehicle's CAN bus and take control of basic functions such as braking, steering and acceleration, "and the driver of the vehicle would not be able to regain control.I've been writing about this for years. Interesting to see it show up in Court.
"Disturbingly, as defendants have known, their CAN bus-equipped vehicles for years have been (and currently are) susceptible to hacking, and their ECUs cannot detect and stop hacker attacks on the CAN buses. For this reason, defendants' vehicles are not secure, and are therefore not safe," the lawsuit states.
The lawsuit claims car owners were charged "substantial premiums" for CAN bus-equipped vehicles. And it argues that the automakers engaged in "unfair, deceptive, and/or fraudulent business practices" by failing to disclose security flaws.Actually, yes. But surely, you say, automotive computer security is arcane. The manufacturers couldn't be expected to understand such a new field, right? Oops:
"Had plaintiffs and the other class members known of the defects at the time they purchased or leased their vehicles, they would not have purchased or leased those vehicles, or would have paid substantially less for the vehicles than they did," the lawsuit said.
The lawsuit cites several studies revealing security flaws in vehicle electronics. A 2013 study by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) found researchers could make vehicles "suddenly accelerate, turn, [and] kill the brakes."Next target of the lawyers: the Internet Of Things, with its computerized light bulbs and central heating systems.
DARPA reported that the defect represents a "real threat to the physical well-being of drivers and passengers." Before releasing its study, DARPA shared its finding with car manufacturers so they could address the vulnerabilities, "but they did nothing," the lawsuit states.