The recent cybersecurity issues that led Fiat Chrysler Automobiles to recall 1.4 million vehicles could pose a problem for cars and trucks from other automakers, the top U.S. auto safety regulator said Friday.
Mark R. Rosekind, who heads the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, said his watchdog agency is trying to determine how many automakers received wireless components from the same company that supplied Fiat Chrysler.
“The supplier didn’t just supply radios to Chrysler but to a lot of other manufacturers,” Rosekind said. “A lot of our work now is trying to find out how broad the vulnerability could be.”
Fiat Chrysler last week announced the recall of 1.4 million U.S. vehicles to install software to prevent hackers from gaining remote control of the engine, steering and other systems.
The announcement followed reports that cybersecurity researchers had used a wireless connection to turn off a Jeep Cherokee’s engine as it drove, increasing concerns about the safety of Internet-enabled vehicles.
Facebook says it will begin test flights later this year for a solar-powered drone with a wingspan as big as a Boeing 737.
Engineers at the giant social network say they have built a drone with a 140-foot wingspan that weighs less than 1,000 pounds. Designed to fly at high altitudes for up to three months, it will use lasers to send Internet signals to stations on the ground.
The project is part of a broader Facebook effort that also contemplates using satellites and other high-tech gear to deliver Internet service to hundreds of millions of people living in regions too remote for conventional broadband networks.
Facebook’s drone was developed in part with engineering expertise that joined the company when it acquired a British aerospace start-up, Ascenta, last year. Jay Parikh, engineering vice president at Facebook, said the team created a design that uses rigid but lightweight layers of carbon fiber, capable of flying in the frosty cold temperatures found at high altitudes, for an extended period of time.
— Associated Press
● U.S. wages and benefits grew at the slowest pace in 33 years this spring, stark evidence that stronger hiring is not lifting paychecks much for most Americans. The slowdown also probably reflects a sharp drop-off in bonus and incentive pay. The employment cost index rose 0.2 percent in the April-June quarter after a 0.7 increase in the first quarter, the Labor Department said Friday. The index tracks wages, salaries and benefits. Wages and salaries alone also rose 0.2 percent. Both measures recorded the smallest quarterly gains since the second quarter of 1982.
● Greece’s stock market will reopen Monday after a five-week shutdown caused by capital controls, but local investors will face restrictions aimed at stemming capital flight, a stock exchange spokeswoman said Friday. The Athens Stock Exchange has been shut since June 29, when the government closed banks and strictly limited withdrawals and foreign transfers to avert a run on deposits. The Finance Ministry cleared the way for the exchange to resume operations. Local investors will be allowed to buy shares with existing cash holdings but not to withdraw money from their Greek bank accounts to buy shares.
● The World Trade Organization says China broke global trade rules by failing to comply with an earlier WTO ruling and continuing to impose duties on specialty steel imports. The decision announced Friday was a victory for the United States and Midwestern steelmakers AK Steel and Allegheny Ludlum. The case dates to 2010, when China imposed duties on a high-tech specialty steel used in power plants. The United States took the case to the WTO and won. But China reintroduced duties on the steel in 2013. The United States went back to the WTO, charging that China was not complying with the earlier decision.
● A pump used to infuse drugs at a patient’s bedside can be hacked through hospital networks, causing an over- or under-dose, U.S. regulators said Friday. Health-care providers should stop use of the pumps, which were manufactured by Hospira and called Symbiq, the Food and Drug Administration said. Although Hospira has quit making the devices, they are still in use by hospitals, nursing homes and other health-care facilities to administer drugs intravenously, the agency said.
● Transportation services such as UberX, Lyft and Sidecar could reduce the rate of drunken driving-related deaths by as much as 3.6 percent, according to new research at Temple University’s Fox School of Business. The study is based on data about alcohol-related vehicular fatalities from 540 townships in California from January 2009 through September 2014. Researchers Brad Greenwood and Sunil Wattal found that the introduction of more costly transportation services, such as Uber, had little effect on alcohol-related fatalities, but the introduction of Uber’s cheaper service, UberX, made a noticeable difference. When researchers factored in competitors such as Lyft and Sidecar, which offer similarly priced services, “the results were actually stronger,” Greenwood said.
● A $1.2 million settlement has been reached in a wrongful death lawsuit over a keg explosion at a New Hampshire brewery. The Portsmouth Herald reported that worker Benjamin Harris, 26, died in April 2012 while pressurizing a plastic beer keg with air at the Redhook Ale Brewery in Portsmouth. The keg exploded, and Harris died of his injuries at a hospital. The lawsuit was brought against Plastic Kegs, Medway and Satellite Logistics Group, which were involved in the manufacture and distribution of the exploded keg.
— From wire reports