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Fiat Chrysler has elected to recall about 1.4 million cars and trucks in the U.S. In a staged event, two hackers took control of a Jeep on a St. Louis highway, finding its online IP address, and taking control of the entertainment system and engaging the brakes. Using the internet, they did this from 10 miles away. The company will update software to insulate the vehicles from being remotely controlled. It also says in a statement that unauthorized remote manipulation of a vehicle is a criminal act.
The recall affects vehicles with 8.4-inch touchscreens including 2013 to 2015 Ram pickups and chassis cabs, Dodge Viper sports cars, 2014 and 2015 Dodge Durango, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Cherokee SUVs, 2015 Chrysler 200 and 300, Dodge Charger and Challenger.
In related news:
WASHINGTON – U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx announced on July 26, 2015 that Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has acknowledged violations of the Motor Vehicle Safety Act’s requirements to repair vehicles with safety defects and will submit to rigorous federal oversight, buy back some defective vehicles from owners, and agreed to a $105 million civil penalty, the largest ever imposed by the Department’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The enforcement action comes after a July 2 public hearing at which NHTSA officials outlined problems with Fiat Chrysler’s execution of 23 vehicle safety recalls covering more than 11 million defective vehicles. Fiat Chrysler has since admitted to violating the Safety Act in three areas: effective and timely recall remedies, notification to vehicle owners and dealers and notifications to NHTSA. In a consent order issued by NHTSA, Fiat Chrysler commits to take action to get defective vehicles off the roads or repaired. Owners of more than half a million vehicles with defective suspension parts that could cause the vehicle to lose control will have the opportunity to sell their vehicle back to Fiat Chrysler. Owners of more than a million Jeeps that are prone to deadly fires either will have the chance to trade their vehicle in for above its market value, or will receive a financial incentive to get their vehicle remedied.
The consent order requires FCA to notify vehicle owners eligible for buybacks and other financial incentives that these new options are available. The automaker also agrees to unprecedented oversight for the next three years, which includes hiring an independent monitor approved by NHTSA to assess, track and report the company’s recall performance. Fiat Chrysler must pay a $70 million cash penalty and must spend at least $20 million on meeting performance requirements included in the Consent Order. Another $15 million could come due if the independent monitor discovers additional violations of the Safety Act or the Consent Order.
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Posted 7/28/2015. While the BBB endeavors to provide accurate information to the public, changes in the law, facts or circumstances may have occurred since the foregoing was posted. The BBB recommends doing independent research and consulting professional advisors concerning a particular situation.