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Vulnerabilities / Threats

Parking Meters: The Next Big Hack?

Security researcher prepares to outline vulnerabilities at upcoming Black Hat conference

There are a lot of ways for your identity stolen to be stolen. Until last week, however, parking legally wasn't one that had occurred to most of us.

Last week, security researcher Joe Grand offered a preview of his upcoming presentation at the Black Hat USA conference, which will take place in Las Vegas next month. The subject of Grand's presentation: parking meters.

Grand says that so-called "smart" parking meters -- which are computerized, often networked, and can accept credit cards -- could be vulnerable to hacking. Attackers could breach the meters to steal credit card data or to gain access to debit cards that could be reset or reloaded, he warns.

In some cities, the meters are connected by wireless or infrared systems that could be hacked to give free parking or expire another driver's spot, Grand says.

Grand didn't give away all of the details of his presentation during the preview, but he said it's likely that others are exploring potential vulnerabilities in the networked meters.

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Tim Wilson is Editor in Chief and co-founder of Dark Reading.com, UBM Tech's online community for information security professionals. He is responsible for managing the site, assigning and editing content, and writing breaking news stories. Wilson has been recognized as one ... View Full Bio

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