John Deere tractors are vulnerable to hacking

You may have heard that the John Deere company is fiercely protective of its proprietary software, enforcing agreements that owners of its tractors cannot conduct their own mainline repairs. Now, according to Motherboard, it turns out that this software is vulnerable to outside hacks. Though there is no proof that bad actors have exploited these weaknesses, an internet researcher who goes by the moniker “Sick Codes” (cool?) claims they were able to access data for “every single John Deere tractor in the world.” This data includes the vehicle or equipment owner’s name, their physical address, the equipment’s unique ID, and its Vehicle Identification Number or VIN. The John Deere company claimed the vulnerabilities were minor and rapidly fixed, a response that Sick Codes immediately said was a lie. Typically, the successful hacker offers their services to help a company remedy its security gaps; it’s unclear if the rift between John Deere and Sick Codes is too deep to mend.

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