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Security Games

Report: Watch Dogs Game May Have Influenced Highway Sign Hacking 154

Posted by Soulskill
from the video-games-caused-the-holocaust dept.
An anonymous reader writes 'Earlier this month, at least three U.S. states reported that a hacker had broken into electronic road signs above major highways, with the hacker leaving messages for people to follow him on Twitter. The Multi-State Information Sharing an Analysis Center (MS-ISAC) produced an intelligence report blaming a Saudi Arabian hacker that the organization says likely got the idea from Watch Dogs, a new video in which game play revolves around "hacking," with a focus on hacking critical infrastructure-based electronic devices in particular. "Watch Dogs allows players to hack electronic road signs, closed-circuit television cameras (CCTVs), street lights, cell phones and other systems. On May 27, 2014, the malicious actor posted an image of the game on his Twitter feed, demonstrating his interest in the game, and the compromise of road signs occurs during game play. CIS believes it is likely that a small percentage of Watch Dogs players will experiment with compromising computers and electronic systems outside of game play, and that this activity will likely affect SSLT [state, local, tribal and territorial] government systems and Department of Transportation (DOT) systems in particular." The signs allowed telnet and were secured with weak or default passwords. The report came out on the same day that The Homeland Security Department cautioned transportation operators about a security hole in some electronic freeway billboards that could let hackers display bogus warnings to drivers.'
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Report: Watch Dogs Game May Have Influenced Highway Sign Hacking

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  • by frovingslosh (582462) on Saturday June 07, 2014 @08:25PM (#47188193)

    more quality moderation/editing:

    SSLT [state, local, tribal and territorial]

    So does the T stand for tribal or territorial, and WTF does the second S stand for? Soulskill?

  • by Cryacin (657549) on Saturday June 07, 2014 @10:36PM (#47188597)
    Pffft. Kids have been "hacking" signs for years. I remember when I was a kid, there was a place called Fairy Falls Creek. A couple of my university friends went and made a professional quality sign, in the same colour, and font as the existing sign, and renamed the area to Hairy Balls Creek. The fact that there were round rocks covered in hairy moss made the sign very plausible. So plausible, that after a few years, even the local tourism guides quoted Hairy Balls Creek.

    You don't need to be high tech to engage in social engineering and changing signs.

    That said, if you're going to make it convenient to change your signs, be sure to make them secure. If you can't ensure your level of security, don't blame a game for your ineptitude.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 08, 2014 @12:51AM (#47188875)

    .. only a few days ago, when a major accident blocks access to every lane, including the exit to another large highway (I-405), except the carpool lane. Having all the road signs telling people to merge to the carpool lane, and the carpool lane was now open to all, is useful.

    That said, with respect to the article, I don't understand. You mean to say zombies aren't ahead?

  • Weed valley (Score:3, Interesting)

    by TapeCutter (624760) on Sunday June 08, 2014 @01:34AM (#47188957) Journal
    The town of Nimbin in Northern NSW is famous for it's weed, they try to attract tourists from the gold coast, they have a weed museum, fashionable hemp clothing, tourist trinkets, and once a year they have a weed Mardi Gras. It's located in the Tweed valley and the main road out of town leads to a town on the coast called Tweed heads. There's been an uneasy "live and let live" relationship with the local police for decades, the practical outcome is there's much less crime and vandalism than (say) the gold coast.

    Having said that, there isn't a single road sign in the district that still has the 'T' intact. :)
  • Gah (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 08, 2014 @06:42AM (#47189551)

    When will these assholes in charge, stop blaming anything besides themselves and their own department, when explaining issues with theis own department/system?

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