A new research paper from Germany discloses that NVIDIA has confirmed a hardware vulnerability that allows an attacker to gain privileged control of code execution for Tesla’s autopilot system. The attack involves a ‘classic’ method of destabilizing hardware by introducing voltage surges, which in this case enables the unlocking of a bootloader that’s usually disabled for consumers, and intended for laboratory conditions.
The attack is also valid for the Mercedes-Benz infotainment system, though with obviously fewer potentially damaging consequences.
The paper, entitled The Forgotten Threat of Voltage Glitching: A Case Study on Nvidia Tegra X2 SoCs, comes from the Technische Universitat Berlin, following up on some of the same researchers’ recent work disclosing a similar exploit in AMD Secure Encrypted Virtualization, published on the 12th August.
We responsibly disclosed our ﬁndings to Nvidia, including our experimental setup and parameters. Nvidia reconstructed our experiments and conﬁrmed that fault injection impacts the tested Tegra Parker SoC and earlier chips. According to them, all newer Tegra SoCs would contain countermeasures to mitigate these types of attacks. Furthermore, they proposed countermeasures to reduce the effectiveness of voltage fault injection on vulnerable chips…