Hacker Immobilizes Cars Remotely in Texas

By Jamie Pert - Mar 19, 2010

It has recently been revealed that an American-based hacker has been caught after hacking into a web-based vehicle-immobilization system, apparently he managed to immobilize over 100 cars in total.

All of the cars which were affected were apparently from the in Texas Auto Center in Austin, Texas, at first they thought that it could be a mechanical failure, however as more customers reported similar issues it became obvious that there was something not quite right.

Hundreds of customers either found that their cars were either completely immobilized or left with the alarm constantly going off, the only way to turn the alarm off was to remove the battery.

In the end the problem was tracked back to the Webtech Plus technology which the Texas Auto Center used to immobilize vehicles if vehicles weren’t paid for, after some investigation they found out that Omar Ramos-Lopez was responsible for all of the problems, they managed to track it back to him via his IP address.

Source: Wired

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  • The crazy thing here is that the only reason these devices would be put on a vehicle is to track a car via GPS. Why they would have it on 100 cars baffles me. It’s generally used for people who are using “In House” Financing options. It would be interesting to see how this plays out, because the customer must be aware of such devices being present and must sign a consent form…or at least thats the case in CA. This could be a lawsuit.