Glitch in the system: BlackBerry admits Cars, Medical Devices at risk of being Hacked

Another day, another cyber threat ruining the day. This time the threat looms over BlackBerry users!

Earlier this year in March, Microsoft Section 52 security members found a huge vulnerability that affected an alarming number of Operational Technology (OT) and Internet of Things (IoT) devices. Now it’s revealed that the devices running BlackBerry’s QNX are the ones that have been affected!

BlackBerry may be a forgotten name for some consumers, but the company’s QNX software still plays a vital role in various products, some of which are categorized as sensitive and critical such as health devices.

A cybersecurity glitch in software built by BlackBerry Ltd could expose cars and highly sensitive medical systems to attackers, the US Food and Drug regulator (FDA) issued a warning.

BlackBerry has released a list of 14 different QNX products that are affected by the glitch. These include OQNX RTOs for Medical devices, the QNX CAR infotainment systems, and QNX OS for Automotive Safety.

The US Food & Drug Administration says the glitch poses a significant threat to “certain medical devices and drug manufacturing equipment.”

In addition, Renowned automobile brands – Volkswagen, BMW, and Ford – all use BlackBerry’s QNX OP for crucial vehicle systems such as driver assistance software.

BlackBerry Glitch 2021

A glitch of this extent certainly raises a wave of concern among consumers. Fortunately, the company had not found any evidence of cyber-attacks exploiting any of the vulnerable QNX products at the time of discovery.

As reported by Politico, BlackBerry was initially hesitant to share this news with the public. But in the end, at Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency (CISA)’s insistence, the company preferred to disclose this privately to their customers.

This is not new with security vulnerabilities such as this. Usually, many companies prefer to remain low-key with this news to prevent tipping off ill-intentioned hackers and consequently turning a bad situation worse.

However, this move doesn’t always work! CISA established the potential national security threat and argued that private notifications could leave out many consumers, especially those who usually don’t read notifications and discard them instantly, assuming it would be for promotions.

Ultimately, BlackBerry had to reveal its vulnerability to the public. But they are also working on the fixes! The company is currently providing patches for at-risk software and guiding consumers on strengthening their security against potential attacks through VPNs and other privacy-focused technologies.

Obviously, this won’t be enough to fix the problem instantly. After all, we are talking about a staggering number of devices used in multiple industries around the globe, all of which are vulnerable to cyberattacks.

It remains to be seen how BlackBerry is going to handle such a situation. Would it be able to tackle a vulnerability jeopardizing the healthcare and automotive sector? Or does this glitch serve as the final nail in the coffin of a struggling company? What are your thoughts about this? Let us know in the comment section below.