• ETC
  • Jul 13, 2014
In the world of computers, competitions that challenge so-called "white hat" hackers are fairly common. Break into this system in X minutes and we'll give you Y dollars. Rarely, though, does this world cross over with the realm of automobiles.

At the 2014 SyScan Conference, which runs from July 16 to 17 in Beijing, hackers have the chance to win $10,000, provided they can break into the systems of a Tesla Model S. According to BidnessETC, in order to win, a successful hack will need to remotely access the 17-inch touchscreen display (shown above) that dominates the Model S cabin in order to surf the Internet and access the vehicle's controls.

While we're not computer experts, it seems like a tall order. The Model S may maintain a constant data signal via its driver's cellphone, but it seems unlikely that Tesla hasn't installed a comprehensive security system to prevent electronic tampering. Tesla, for what it's worth, has no part in the competition.

It will be interesting to see if there are any successful attempts. As Forbes mentions, hackers have been successful in gaining access to more conventional automobiles, although those attempts were under the watchful supervision of DARPA researchers.

Of course, we'll find out just how potent the company's security efforts are when the conference kicks off next week.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 48 Comments
      Grendal
      • 5 Months Ago
      This just in: The Gen III smaller sedan will be named the....wait for it....Model III.
      Motorolabizz
      • 5 Months Ago
      While plugged in to the vehicle anything is possible but REMOTELY, I don't see that happening.
      jphyundai
      • 5 Months Ago
      This morning I was almost hit by a Tesla who turned too sharp across my lane. To think that a Tesla almost hit me. I could have perished in a fiery crash. Probably Tesla guy would survived and I would have burned to death. These vehicles a rolling menace to the general public.
        PheelACCD
        • 5 Months Ago
        @jphyundai
        All you're doing is giving Hyundai a bad name.
          bluepongo1
          • 5 Months Ago
          @PheelACCD
          Hyundai's quality gives Hyundai a bad name.
        Ben Crockett
        • 5 Months Ago
        @jphyundai
        I suppose the sky is falling also. Come on it's getting old already - such hatred for something you know nothing about so you spread FUD as a defence.
        miles
        • 5 Months Ago
        @jphyundai
        Yeah, I almost got run off the road by an Elantra last week. Curse you Hyundai!!!!!! /s
          jphyundai
          • 5 Months Ago
          @miles
          Yeahhh, well remember the doctor who killed 3 members of a family with his Tesla last week? I guess your attention span and memory are really short.
          Weapon
          • 5 Months Ago
          @miles
          @jphyundai - To be more accurate, what killed them was the Toyota Corolla. As it lit itself on fire and trapped the passengers. If any other car would have hot them, the outcome would have been the same.
        Weapon
        • 5 Months Ago
        @jphyundai
        Well then get rid of your gasoline car for an EV, then you won't perish in a fiery crash.
        Julio B
        • 5 Months Ago
        @jphyundai
        What about the other 33,500 motor vehicle deaths a year not caused by a Tesla? You went full retard, never go full retard...
        Avinash Machado
        • 5 Months Ago
        @jphyundai
        The quality of trolls is declining nowadays.
        purrpullberra
        • 5 Months Ago
        @jphyundai
        You are disgracing your fisherman ancestors, I tell you what! Becoming a living racial stereotype is not a good way to make a point. We laugh at and pity you. And stop lying you shameful loser.
      jphyundai
      • 5 Months Ago
      http://insideevs.com/video-tesla-model-s-in-flames-after-violent-crash-in-mexico/
        Weapon
        • 5 Months Ago
        @jphyundai
        The car saved his life (according to the driver) and he made it out with no major injuries. So what point are you trying to make?
        Joeviocoe
        • 5 Months Ago
        @jphyundai
        Man,... somebody is sore that he couldn't profit from short selling TSLA after such a tragedy. Still trying to drum up ignorance based negativity
        miles
        • 5 Months Ago
        @jphyundai
        Free hint: Don't put the name of your employer in your screen name.
      LW
      • 5 Months Ago
      This is a cheap lazy way for Tesla to have the public find the vulnerabilities of its system. Hire a outside consultant to find any weaknesses in their system....$400k, call all hackers to hand over the method that they would have gotten into the system....$10k.
        Weapon
        • 5 Months Ago
        @LW
        Tesla is not the one sponsoring this contest.
        Card13
        • 5 Months Ago
        @LW
        You think the best and most creative hackers all work for a big firm? Many of them are perfecting their skill in their parents' basement and would love some extra cash to upgrade their equipment
        zero
        • 5 Months Ago
        @LW
        The operating system used by Tesla Motors for the Model S is a custom Ubuntu Linux meaning any hackers can look at the source codes for possible vulnerability that can affect other Linux variant as well unlike most proprietary systems that powered either Apple or Windows devices. Better have multiple eyes exposing bugs than a single consultant.
        Tweaker
        • 5 Months Ago
        @LW
        Nonsense. The last thing Tesla wants right now is bad publicity in China. The Chinese media has been on their back lately, probably at the behest of the government who would downplay another American competitor in a market they are desperately trying to corner.
        PheelACCD
        • 5 Months Ago
        @LW
        "Tesla, for what it's worth, has no part in the competition." That's in the article above. Read, THEN comment.
          LW
          • 5 Months Ago
          @PheelACCD
          that's wut u think.
      bluepongo1
      • 5 Months Ago
      http://www.alexa.com/siteinfo/edmunds.com <===< look at " What sites are related to edmunds.com " LOL !!!! You got fooled by a dealer site, how much spam did they send you ? >===> http://www.alexa.com/siteinfo/truedelta.com <===< look at " What sites are relaed to truedelta.com" LOL !!!! 2 times the fool ... they are the same hit-piece !!!!!! @ kinasi
        bluepongo1
        • 5 Months Ago
        @bluepongo1
        All these alleged folks with " lemon law " Teslas should hire Vince Menga and get out-smarted by their car. *( lemon law varies by state but if you have the same problems 3 times, you have a case./ Unless of course you are dealer frauds like edmunds / truedelta and are too scared to get caught .) Keep down- voting without the conviction to respond it helps your cause F.U.D. spreaders.
      eye.surgeon
      • 5 Months Ago
      I test drove a Model S in San Jose last week. That beautiful touchscreen features a dead-slow web browser with a 3G connection that reminded me of surfing the net in 2007.
      Levine Levine
      • 5 Months Ago
      No computer is hack-proof. Not even in a Tesla. Winning the $10k is a cake-walk.
      Actionable Mango
      • 5 Months Ago
      Well at least one or two of the 50 responses to this article were actually about the article.
      • 5 Months Ago
      cash or credit???
      Teslaliving
      • 5 Months Ago
      Car Hack Response No details anywhere on the "hack". Did they merely guess the username/password of some owner and then use the documented API to control (some very basic) functions of the car? I'd guess that of the 40,000 owners most have a poor password scheme. Many email addresses can be found on the tesla-specific forums and then it would just take some dictionary work to get past the poor passwords. Lots of press for this supposed hack. Blog: http://teslaliving.wordpress.com Twitter: @Teslaliving
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