The greatest threat of car hacking won’t come from ISIS, or China, or North Korea, or some disgruntled teenager turned anarchist-terrorist. No, it will come from a far darker place than all of those things put together: Hollywood.

Today reader west-coaster summed up why you should really fear car hacking:

I can think of some really bad fallout from the Jeep hack: awful movie scripts.

Picture a big-budget action flick in the next year or two, and the pivotal scene where the bad guy is getting away. The sweaty hero with three days’ worth of stubble on his face (take your pick from among hunky actors) is desperate because the villain is about to get away with (a nuclear device, plans for a nuclear device, a vile of destructive bacteria...take your pick).

All hope seems lost, so along comes the nerdy 16 year old with a laptop to save the day. He wears thick glasses and a hoodie, of course.

Hero: “Can you hack into the car’s computer?!?!?”

Nerd: “Of course.” (Smirking while he pull his laptop from his backpack. He then starts frantically typing the equivalent of 70 wpm on the keyboard. Computer nerds in movies NEVER use a mouse or other pointing device. They just type really fast.)

Hero: “Take control of the steering!”

Nerd: “Done.”

Hero: “Lock the doors!”

Nerd: “Done.”

Hero: “Disable the engine!”

Nerd: “Done.”

Hero (with a sneer on his face): “Okay, set the engine’s spark plugs to blow up the gas tank.”

Nerd: “Uh, are you sure you want me to do that?”

Hero (his voice now a deep, breathy whisper). “Just...do it. NOW.”

Nerd (sheepishly): “Uh...okay.” (Lots more typing on the keyboard, then the car explodes as only cars in movies do, with the equivalent of 500 gallons of gasoline erupting in a huge fireball.)

Hero wipes his brow, and slaps the nerd on the back. Car hacking has saved the world from destruction once again.

Cut to scene the next day, hero is out in nature somewhere, and throws his badge into a river or off a cliff. Fade to black...roll credits.

You know what? Screw it, I’d pay $10 to see that.

Congrats on your COTD win, west-coaster! Everyone else, burn your computers just to be safe! Drive your Jeeps into lakes! We can’t take any chances!


Contact the author at patrick@jalopnik.com.