The security researchers from Check Point Research warn that modern used cars can become a target for data thieves. Last year, about 350,000 cars changed hands in Germany – many of them equipped with modern IT equipment for navigation or communication as well as interfaces for smartphones.
Various data relating to the previous driver were collected and stored via these, possibly even synchronized with the mobile phone. If this data is not sufficiently protected and not deleted in the event of a sale, it is a welcome target for hackers and extortionists. This could get you to contact information, phone numbers, text messages, locations and travel routes.
Christine Schönig, Regional Director Security Engineering CER, Office of the CTO at Check Point
“In the meantime, technological progress in our vehicles has matured to such an extent that many functions are available in virtually all city cars that are continuously connected to IT systems. These features include: Bluetooth connectivity for smartphone pairing, GPS navigation, Digital radio, WiFi hotspots, collision avoidance systems or remote diagnostics. Because of these features, cars quickly become databases on wheels-and thus lucrative targets for criminals, ” reports Christine Schönig, Regional Director Security Engineering CER, Office of the CTO, at Check Point Software Technologies GmbH : “Drivers and dealers must be aware of the attractiveness that such a library represents for attackers. Therefore, in principle, the data must be conscientiously deleted in the event of a sale and manufacturers are obliged to reliably and comprehensively protect the systems implemented in the car against attacks.“