By Ogar Monday
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The Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, has warned car owners to be on alert as hackers can now remotely unlock their vehicles and steal them.
The Commission in a press release signed by Dr. Ikechukwu Adinde, Director of the Public Affairs Department said there is a need for car owners to be more vigilant and aware of their environment.
The statement reads in part: “NCC wishes to alert telecom consumers and members of the public on an ongoing cyber-vulnerability that allows a nearby hacker to unlock vehicles, start their engines wirelessly, and make away with the cars.
“The fact that car remotes are categorized as short-range devices that make use of radio frequency to lock and unlock cars informed the need for the Commission to alert the general public on this emergent danger, where hackers take advantage to unlock and start a compromised car.
“With this latest type of cyber-attack, it is also possible to manipulate the captured commands and re-transmit them to achieve a different outcome altogether. Multiple researchers disclosed a vulnerability, which is said to be used by a nearby attacker to unlock some Honda and Acura car models and start their engines wirelessly.”
The NCC advised car owners who feel their car keys have been tempered with “to reset your key fob at the dealership. Besides, the affected car manufacturer may provide a security mechanism that generates fresh codes for each authentication request, this makes it difficult for an attacker to ‘replay’ the codes thereafter. Additionally, vulnerable car users should store their key fobs in signal-blocking ‘faraday pouches’ when not in use.”
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