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Friendly Reminder: Hackers could someday turn car washes into death machines

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The murder weapon?

I wish I was kidding. According to Motherboard, cyber security experts have identified the latest vulnerability in the fabric of the American landscape: automatic car washes.

A group of security researchers have found vulnerabilities in internet-connected drive-through car washes that would let hackers remotely hijack the systems to physically attack vehicles and their occupants. The vulnerabilities would let an attacker open and close the bay doors on a car wash to trap vehicles inside the chamber, or strike them with the doors, damaging them and possibly injuring occupants.

“We believe this to be the first exploit of a connected device that causes the device to physically attack someone,” Billy Rios, the founder of Whitescope security, told Motherboard. Rios conducted the research with Jonathan Butts of QED Secure Solutions. They plan to discuss their findings this week at the Black Hat security conference in Las Vegas.

We encourage you to read the rest of the report. But I’m just going to throw this out there: If you’re trying to do as much damage as possible, I can think of a few other targets than your friendly neighborhood car wash.

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