Hackers manage to unlock Tesla software-locked features

A group of hackers has uncovered a vulnerability in Tesla’s software that allows users to unlock software-locked features worth up to $15,000. These features, such as heated seats and Tesla’s Full Self-Driving package, are normally activated by paying or subscribing to a service. Tesla has been at the forefront of offering software-locked features, allowing owners to unlock them later through software updates. The hackers, who are security researchers from TU Berlin, plan to present their exploit in a presentation called “Jailbreaking an Electric Vehicle in 2023 or What It Means to Hotwire Tesla’s x86-Based Seat Heater” next week. The hack requires physical access to the car and involves a “voltage fault injection attack” on the AMD-based infotainment system. The hackers claim that their “Tesla Jailbreak” is “unpatchable” and allows for running “arbitrary software on the infotainment.” They also believe that they can unlock virtually all software-locked features, including Full Self-Driving, with some more reverse-engineering. Despite the exploit, the hackers acknowledge that they believe Tesla’s security is better than other automakers.


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