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Hacker Finds Way to Unlock Tesla Models, Start Cars

  • Method to exploit smart technology tied to Bluetooth protocol
  • No evidences of thieves using technique to access cars
Tesla Model S
Tesla Model SPhotographer: SeongJoon Cho/Bloomberg
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Tesla Inc. customers might love the carmakers’ nifty keyless entry system, but one cybersecurity researcher has demonstrated how the same technology could allow thieves to drive off with certain models of the electric vehicles.

A hack effective on the Tesla Model 3 and Y cars would allow a thief to unlock a vehicle, start it and speed away, according to Sultan Qasim Khan, principal security consultant at the Manchester, UK-based security firm NCC Group. By redirecting communications between a car owner’s mobile phone, or key fob, and the car, outsiders can fool the entry system into thinking the owner is located physically near the vehicle.