How hackers robbed $23,000 from a Kansas car dealership

Car dealers, like other businesses, are now a target of overseas hackers looking to make quick money. Why? They're easy prey.

We've already seen how little of an understanding many car dealerships have of the Internet. It's no wonder they're easy targets for European hackers looking for a quick score.

Green Ford of Abilene, Kan., had $23,000 taken from their bank accounts by a "probably Russian or Ukrainian" hacker who tapped into the dealership's business accounts and funneled money out using a fake employee created in their system, according to Automotive News. The hackers then employed an easy keystroke logger called "Zeus" that allowed them to gain access to the dealership controller's user name and password for their bank accounts.

Because dealerships are constantly logged into networks to exchange information with vendors, and because many are protected only by a firewall, it's easy for hackers to walk off with the equivalent of a new Ford Focus.

This issue in Kansas is apparently an isolated one, but the Automotive News article makes it clear dealerships should pay a little more attention to the Internet. Or at least spend more money on insurance and security.