Last year, some hackers in China proved that the Tesla Model S was a hackable machine. In the wake of some more recent hackable automotive news, it shouldn't be quite as surprising that such a connected car like the Model S is exploitable. Still, Tesla Motors [NSDQ:TSLA] seems to be far more in tune with the tech world than your average automaker, even working with hackers to make its cars more secure, so you'd think they would be ahead of the game here.
According to Green Car Reports, a pair of White Hat hackers found that the Model S can still be hacked, but only when someone is able to physically lay his or her hands on the car. An initial bit of malware needs to be uploaded, and after that the hacker can have their way with the Model S. Additionally, the car's own web browser can be hacked because it's running outdated software. The average browser is constantly being updated to protect against malicious forces, and it's time for Tesla's in-car browser to get the same treatment.
The news of the Model S exploits prompted quick action from Tesla. In fact, they've already sent out an over-the-air update to Model S owners. It addresses the vulnerability found by the hacking team, and the cars are now more secure.
This bit of news, and the relevant fix stands in contrast to the recent news out of the Chrysler camp. While Tesla quickly addressed the issue, it seems that a fix for the hack-vulnerable products out of Detroit require a bit more time. Those vehicles need to be recalled, while the Model S was fixed as it simply sat in the owner's garage.