A taxi passenger recently found out how open NYC’s new taxi computers are to casual exploration. A wayward error message and some ingenuity lead to an open Internet browser and access to the computer’s file system. It’s disheartening to learn that these computers, provided by TaxiTech, are open to the probing of casual users. It is even more alarming when considering that these systems are used to process credit card payments as well. Are customers’ credit card numbers stored on these computers? If so, are they secure? Let’s hope that TaxiTech and its partners have designed a system that does not put customer information at risk when errors occur.

I also wonder how all these Windows machines riding through the streets of New York are patched and upgraded. Is there an automated updating scheme, or are they wide open to attacks from the Internet until someone gets around to patching the machines?

Until these questions are answered, paying with cash might be the best option.

via City Room

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