back to article Need a green traffic light all the way home? Easy with insecure street signals, say researchers

Criminals monkeying with traffic lights are a staple of cinema: the 1969 Italian Job and Luc Besson's Taxi are particularly fine examples. Now researchers have demonstrated that fact is much less glamorous – and simpler – than fiction. Youtube clip from the Italian Job In a paper [PDF] delivered to the USENIX Security 2014 …

There are strobe light systems too.

You can actually buy boxes with IR strobe lights that will trigger many traffic lights that look for a particular strobe pattern that emergency vehicles emit when they have their lights going.

Example; http://www.themirt.com/index.php

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Meh

<quote>while it's not possible to force the lamps into weird combinations, such as red and green together, it's possible to cause congestion</quote>

Well, duh. Traffic lights cause congestion. That is what they do. That and cause envelopes of folding money to appear in town planners' pockets.

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Anonymous Coward

Welcome to the Internet of Things......

....and this is only a tiny taste of Things to Come.

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Joke

Re: Welcome to the Internet of Things......

Protip: avoid tasting things that come (whether before or after).

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Eh...

http://www.themirt.com/index.php

FWIW, since 2005 illegal in the US .

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Anonymous Coward

Hacking the system to get green lights the whole way in this area is a lot easier. They all use motion sensors programmed to green light for vehicles with strobes flashing at a given frequency, which just so happens to line up with the flashing lights of all the emergency vehicles around here (which, I take it, is the intention in the system). With a little practice you can flash your headlights at the right interval four or five times about a half or 3/4 block before you get to the intersection to get a green light every time.

Just don't let the cops catch you doing it. Not only is the fine absurdly large ($600 for each light they catch you flashing) but they really don't like it when people screw with a system meant to keep everyone safe.

A friend of mine got nailed for this to the tune of $2400 and a night in jail. Incidentally I was sitting in the passenger seat at the time and trying very hard to convince the cop I didn't know the driver, or at least didn't want to, after the phrase 'stupid pig' was uttered.

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