Researchers Trick Tesla Cars’ Automated Systems Into Speeding by Altering Traffic Signs

Ruben Fields
February 21, 2020

"By making a tiny sticker-based modification to our speed limit sign, we were able to cause a targeted misclassification of the MobilEye camera on a Tesla and use it to cause the vehicle to autonomously speed up to 85 miles per hour when reading a 35-mph sign", the researchers said.

Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. The team commended Tesla's engineers for improving the company's code, but the researchers say the findings can still be useful for the larger automotive industry. Tesla did not respond to the MIT Technology Review's request for comment but did acknowledge the research and said it had no plans to fix the generation's technology.

Cruise control is part of Tesla's self-driving "Autopilot" system which is supposed to control the vehicle's speed and alter it depending on road signs, the distance between other cars, and other factors.

McAfee said that MobilEye's EyeQ3 camera is used by some other vehicles to determine the speed limit, which it then displays on the vehicle's heads-up display (HUD). We first saw the news via MIT Technology Review.

Following the report's release, Mobileye released a statement: "Traffic sign fonts are determined by regulators, and so advanced driver-assistance systems are primarily focused on other more challenging use cases, and this system in particular was created to support human drivers - not autonomous driving".

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Now, for those who personal a Tesla or are planning to purchase one, be aware that Tesla has since moved to utilizing proprietary cameras for its newer fashions, whereas Mobileye has additionally upgraded its cameras which now not make it vulnerable to all these assaults, however the truth stays that there are nonetheless loads of older fashions on the street as we speak that would probably be affected. Musk has said publicly stated that Tesla's Autopilot performs "better than a human driver". The company's autopilot system was taken into the federal investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration after two accidents with the vehicle in autopilot mode.

According to Huang's wife, he had complained about the car's Autopilot veering toward that same barrier multiple times before.

"It's quite improbable that we'll ever see this in the wild or that attackers will try to leverage this until we have truly autonomous vehicles, and by that point we hope that these kinds of flaws are addressed earlier on", Povolny said.

A year ago the tech billionaire claimed the company would have a "feature-complete full self-driving" vehicle by the end of 2019.

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