Police intervention was required earlier this week when "political protesters" hacked a Sydney traffic sign and declared "Kevin Rudd sucks" to passing motorists in the city's Rose Bay. The declaration proved such a "major distraction" to passing motorists that cops were eventually obliged to gain access to the offending device's …
I think I know how
The default password for many matrix signs is on the internet.
Perhaps the sign's control interface
is a page on an unpublicised webserver somewhere? Damn those pesky hackers.
sorry, wrong quote
sorry guys, I quoted the wrong people. I honestly thought that El Reg was quoting a police spoke person and not the, linked to, article.
I jumped the gun, so please accept my apologizes.
All you need is..
laptop.. usb IR sender... some brute force s/w and bingo.... saves you taking the panel off and programming by hand using the inbuilt handset.
They accept infrared programming for neat drive by administration...
Presumably these signs are just oversized mobile phones, displaying SMS messages?
In which case "security" is keeping the phone number secret. Wouldn't be stamped on the machine anywhere would it?
I could imagine far more disruptive and malicious exploits than simply insulting the PM.
Roads are wicked slippery!
Diggnation has featured this a number of times. Apparently, it's a piece of piss to do. And Kevin Rudd DOES suck.
There is no "hacking" involved.
Prime Minster's Honour?
PRESERVE it??? Bit late for that, don'tcha think Mr OzPlod?
<-for my next trick, I wil hack this stop sign to display an insulting message to Gordon Brown...
Re: Prime Minister's Honour
I agree, and unless Australians everywhere have spent the last few decades engaged in a coordinated campaign of global mis-information regarding the Oz national character, I think pollies (is that right) enjoy no more respect up there than they do down here.
But I can see that giving *every* driver on the road a really good laugh might be, er, distracting, and so there might be a road safety requirement to black out the sign.
Actually, very easy to hack...
These types of roadsigns are not remotely configured; they have a local PC control interface in that big yellow box at the back. Rarely locked, so it's said.. not that I'd know in person.
Here's more information for the curious (Inc. passwords and reset methodology.)
Harder because its electric
Many Oz signs have slots for the police to put in the bad-behaviour du jour.
E.g. Police Targeting: Speeding/Seatbelts/alcohol etc.
I suppose this is supposed to terrify you into submission but I take it to mean that you can speed if they are targeting seatbelts or drive drunk if speed is being monitored.
You could just snag the letters from your local church noticeboard and slide them in - I'm getting the letters for "Koalas" and "Rare Birds" because that makes more sense the the usual signs.
...or create your own [fake] signs.....
That instead of reprogramming the thing back to normal, they had to kill the power to the sign. Maybe they forgot the password???
this reminds me of
a story a couple of years ago where students hacked a talking bus stop (somewhere down south) advising blind passengers where to go. Unfortuately for them, it didn't mention anything about buses.
Paris, cos she went where she was told to go.