NHTSA Investigates HARMAN for hack attacks of FCA’s UConnect

HARMANnewlogoThe National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is investigating the infotainment systems provided by HARMAN for UConnect service that was remotely hacked in a Jeep Cherokee by Charlie Miller and Chris Valesek.

The investigation is to check the extent of similarities in other infotainment products provided to other vehicle manufacturers by HARMAN. If sufficient similarities exist, the investigation will examine if there is cause for concern that security issues exist in other Harman Kardon products, of which there are an estimated 2.8 million.

The investigator, Kareem Habib, states in the problem description “Harman Kardon infotainment systems supplied to Chrysler had software security vulnerabilities allowing unauthorized third-party access to networked vehicle control systems. The vulnerabilities may exist in other Harman Kardon products.”

HARMAN recently changed its logo and the names of its divisions. The Infotainment division will now be known as Connected Car. The new motto is “Expect Brilliance.”

Fiat Chrysler Autos announced a voluntary safety recall to update Uconnect software in approximately 1.4 million vehicles equipped with certain 8.4″ touchscreen radios.The company has also applied network-level security measures to prevent the type of remote manipulation demonstrated in a recent media reports.

The security update can be performed at a dealer or via a USB drive after downloading it from the web.

The threat of car hacking has reached car owners and shoppers, and almost 80% saying it will be a frequent problem within the next three years or less, according to a survey by Kelley Blue Book.