July 13, 2016
One year after hackers showed they could control a moving Jeep, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV has a new solution to get computer whizzes to work more closely with it: pay them.
The Italian-U. S. auto maker is launching a bug bounty program aimed at giving hackers between $150 and $1,500 every time they uncover potential cybersecurity flaws in its vehicles and alert the company. The auto maker has tapped Bugcrowd Inc., a San Francisco company that runs bug bounty programs that compensate hackers willing to work with companies or other organizations to uncover gaps.
Bugcrowd already runs a program for electric-car maker Tesla Motors Inc. Tesla fell victim to a high-profile security hack last year, when computer-security researchers revealed they had found a way to effectively power down a Tesla Model S by hacking the entertainment system.
Tesla issued a patch to resolve the problem.
Fiat Chrysler and others were caught off guard earlier last summer when two researchers demonstrated they could take control of a moving Jeep Cherokee from a laptop miles away using the vehicle’s wireless communications system. Fiat Chrysler fixed the security flaw through a vehicle recall and software patch, but the hack raised new questions about the safety of the growing pool of internet-connected cars on the road.