The Tesla Web Services account was breached to mine cryptocurrencies, as reported by Fortune First. The breach was notified by the cryptocurrency startup named Redlock. In addition to mining cryptocurrencies, the hack also leaked some of the company’s sensitive information about mapping, telemetry, and the servicing of its vehicles.
Redlock found out about the hack after it noticed that an IT account did not use a password. The company was since unable to find out who started the hack or the amount of cryptocurrency that was mined in the breach. According to the Fortunate media outlet, Tesla paid RedLock $3,000 as part of a bounty to find the breach, as part of a reward for people to find holes sand vulnerable lines of code in Tesla’s products and services.
“We keep a bug bounty program to help people fund this research, and we fixed this issue within hours of finding it,” stated a Tesla spokesperson via email correspondence with Business Insider. “The impact of the breach seems to be concentrated to internal use test cars only, and the investigation did not find any indication that consumer or vehicle safety was affected in any way.”
So far, the Amazon Web Services division of the company has become one of the company’s most profitable and reliable platforms. But its AWS accounts, alongside its business and government websites are now vulnerable to cryptojacking attacks, which involves hackers breaking into them to mine cryptocurrencies. These kinds of attacks have become increasingly profitable over the last couple of years.
“Due to how new cloud security programs are today, we will see these kinds of cybercrimes increase in both scale and speed,” said RedLock CTO Gaurav Kumar in a statement that was addressed to Business Insider.
The hack also showed one of the chief complaints that auto manufacturers have as they rush to be the first companies to offer self-driving vehicles and ride-sharing devices. If this data or technology was to be exposed to its competitors, it could mean the difference between success and failure, with a game of eventual catch-up.
That difference could be worth billions, which is the key reason for why Waymo sued the company Uber after Anthony Levandowski, who was a former engineer at Uber joined the business after working at Waymo, and is alleged to have stolen confidential information that was used to make lidar sensors. As a result, Uber agreed to give Waymo $245 million in equity as a settlement payment.