Tesla Motors Inc Model S Has Software Flaw: Qihoo 360

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Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA)’s Model S is considered one of the most secure cars on the road. And the vehicle has won plenty of accolades in the last couple of years. However, the sedan is on watch amid reports that there is a serious flaw in its software. Researchers at Chinese Internet security giant Qihoo 360 Technology Co Ltd (NYSE:QIHU) told China Daily on Tuesday that the software vulnerabilities could be exploited to unlock car doors using a remote control.

Yet another security flaw in Tesla

Qihoo has already informed Tesla of the flaw in the vehicle’s onboard program. The vulnerability could also lead to remote activation of lights, glass roof and horns. Jiang Xuxian, senior scientist at the Beijing-based company, said that hackers can exploit it using the high-tech maneuvers. However, it can easily be fixed by deactivating the sedan’s remote access function.

Tesla would take Qihoo’s words seriously because it was the first company in the world that found and reported a security flaw in Tesla cars. In the past, there have been several reports of vulnerabilities in Tesla cars. Earlier this year, Nitesh Dhanjani, a Model S owner, said the electric car can be located and unlocked remotely by cracking a six-character password using traditional hacking techniques.

Tesla can fix the vulnerability simply by sending an over-the-air update

The latest report of a security flaw comes just a day before the SyScan Conference kicks off in Beijing. The conference organizers have set a $10,000 prize to anyone who can hack a Model S. Security experts from all other the world are expected to try their luck. Tesla already has a strong reputation when it comes to security of its cars. The San Francisco-based company’s vulnerability disclosure program encourages people to identify security flaws in Model S and report them to the company.

Tesla began selling its cars in China in April. The nation is expected to become one of the biggest markets for the U.S. electric carmaker. As far as the software flaw is concerned, Tesla has the ability to remotely update software in its cars. So, the issue should be fixed quickly.

Tesla shares were down 0.35% to $225.91 in early trading session Tuesday.

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