The Michigan state Senate has taken up two bills which if passed will introduce life sentences in prison for people who hack into cars. The move comes not too long after the FBI sent out a public service announcement to warn people about the risks of car hacking as our cars become more connected and open to hackers. Michigan is one of the first few states looking to criminalize car hacking with such ferocity.
These are the first of several bills on this matter that the state Senate is taking up. If and when they’re passed, it will be a felony for someone to “intentionally access or cause access to be made to an electronic system of a motor vehicle to willfully destroy, damage, impair, alter or gain unauthorized control of the motor vehicle.”
Senate Bills 927 and 928 have been sent to its judiciary committee. One of the sponsors of these bills, Sen. Mike Kowall, has said that the idea here is to be proactive on this matter and “try to keep up with technology,” instead of waiting for something bad to happen first before taking action.
Some might think that sentences up to life in prison are too harsh if car hacking is criminalized but Kowall says that high penalties have been proposed because there’s great potential for severe injury and death when it comes to car hacking.
We’ll have to wait and see if the majority thinks along the same lines and passes these bills into law.