Common sense would dictate that having a remote service like OnStar in one’s car would be a benefit, with the technology allowing for quick emergency response, remote door unlocking and even tracking of stolen vehicles. Like most technologies, however, this one has its down side, and that side has been emphasized by a new report cited recently in The New York Times.

It seems that with a modest amount of expertise, computer hackers could gain remote access to someone’s car—just as they do to people’s personal computers—and take over the vehicle’s basic functions, including control of its engine, according to a report by computer scientists from the University of California, San Diego and the University of Washington, the Times says.

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