Ram pickups added to ‘hacking’ recall

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Ram says it is recalling certain vehicles equipped with 8.4-inch touchscreens in a sweep that updates software to prevent connected vehicles from being hacked.

Model year 2013-2015 Ram 1500, 2500 and 3500 pickups; and 2013-2015 Ram 3500, 4500, 5500 Chassis Cabs were added to the recall list Friday.

Remote manipulation of a vehicle is a crime, but Ram parent Fiat Chrysler (FCA US) is conducting a voluntary safety recall to update software in approximately 1,400,000 U.S. vehicles equipped with certain radios.

Hacking into a pickup is no easy feat. Ram says the software manipulation addressed by this recall required “unique and extensive technical knowledge, prolonged physical access to a subject vehicle and extended periods of time to write code.”

In a controlled test, Wired last week reported it was able to hack into, and operate remotely, a Jeep Cherokee.

FCA US says it has applied network-level security measures to prevent the type of remote manipulation demonstrated in a recent media report. These measures – which required no customer or dealer actions – block remote access to certain vehicle systems and were fully tested and implemented within the cellular network July 23.

FCA US says it is unaware of any injuries related to software exploitation, nor is it aware of any related complaints, warranty claims or accidents – independent of the media demonstration.