Millions at Risk as Boffins Break Doorlock Code. Or Not.
Microchip Technologies (MT) is in full damage/spin control mode, as Israeli and Belgian boffins say they've cracked the "Keeloq" anti-theft key code. The code is the foundation of the company's remote control system. MT's plippers lock and unlock the doors and immobilize and de-immobilize models built by Fiat, General Motors, Toyota, Volvo, Honda, Volkswagen, Jaguar, Daewoo and Chrysler. Microchip's website calls the code "a highly secure algorithm." The hackers call it lunchmeat. The Jerusalem Post says all the geeks have to do is wirelessly access your key for about an hour, run their computer program and hey presto! They can identify your code from a billion billion possibilities, unlock your car and motor away. Or can they? "Our attack was checked in depth in program simulations," claimed researchers Sebastian Indestig, Eli Beham, Or Dunkelman, Barrett Fernil and Natan Keller. These guys would do well to remember the Ancient Art of War admonition: the algorithm is not the territory.
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