Saturday, December 31, 2011

The Boogeyman Is Out To Kill You In Your Car

In today's Spokesman Review we have an article by Steve Johnson about hi-tech vehicles being vulnerable to hacking. The article was originally published in the San Jose Mercury news three days ago.

Fear is a strong attention getter so what better way to get the reader's attention than this:

Imagine this nightmarish possibility: al-Qaida terrorists remotely disabling the brakes on thousands of cars racing down a Bay Area freeway during the morning commute, leading to massive chaos, death and destruction. Implausible? Maybe not, some experts warn.

Let me rephrase that.

Imagine a group of low-tech religious fanatics notorious for once using box cutters to take over four planes and killing themselves and their passengers by flying them into buildings now disabling the brakes on thousands of cars by remote control, leading to massive chaos, death and destruction. Does that seem reasonable or probable? Some experts say maybe so.

Really? It's interesting that we tend to think something is more likely to happen just because we can imagine it happening. After imagining this "nightmarish possibility" it now seems more likely, doesn't it? Well, please, think again.


Double Felix said...

I have to disagree with Hank on this one.

It's far more likely our cars will be tracked and manipulated by the dozen members of al Quaeda from dial-up laptops in Waziristan than by the massive computer infrastructure of Homeland Security and trillion dollar NSA satelites systems.

I mean, just stands to reason, doesn't it?

Spokane Al said...

I think we should just visualize whirled peas.

A.W. Shucks said...

I wouldn't know NSA from NASCAR Felix, but looks like the Obama administration thinks it can not only track your car without a warrant, but also your penny loafers.

Jolly Green Marshmellow Salad said...

Our politicians in the White House and Congress have been carefully chosen for us by Wall Street.  If our dear leaders feel a need to tidy-up the Bill of Rights a bit, I'm sure it was a cleansing long overdue.  

The Fourth Amendment looks much trimmer now without warrants.  In fact, with Dear Leader Obama's signing of the indefinite detention bill today, we've gotten rid of all that bloated judiciary and presumed innocent nonsense. 

I mean, "habeus corpus"?  That even SOUNDS yucky.