There are members of the public that have raised questions about the safety of Tesla's autonomous driving vehicles, but the company has always had an answer to the claims of AI-caused accidents. Now, however, Tesla cannot do anything but man up and correct a mistake it made regarding the security vulnerabilities of their units.
The Good Samaritan
Keen Security Lab of Tencent spent months researching Tesla's Model S vehicle and in doing so discovered several vulnerabilities in its system. What is possibly the most alarming thing about the group's findings, is that these vulnerabilities are not physical, but surround the autonomous driving system of the vehicle.
According to its report, the group was able to control a Tesla Model S in both its parking and driving mode, without having to literally break into the system. Rather, it used a remote attack to hack into the existing structure.
And while the experiment was only conducted on a Model S, the group claims it would be safe to assume that all Tesla vehicles had the same security vulnerabilities.
But because the research started from a purely educational standpoint, the group shared its findings with Tesla, which is now working on these security vulnerabilities. Keen Security also lauds the autonomous car manufacturer for acting quickly after its report was made.
Tesla's Quick Action
As Fortune reports, Tesla has already rolled out a new update to the driving systems of its units, which is already available for current unit owners. The company worked quickly to address the issues and bugs which Keen Security was able to unearth and was finished with the necessary update a day after the report was received.
Reportedly, Tesla used an over-the-air fix, which allows vehicle owners to make the updates themselves, as opposed to having to visit a dealership.
What To Do
It is strongly urged that current Tesla vehicle owners update their firmware. This will ensure that the issues that were brought to light are correspondingly fixed.