Road signs hacked to display foul-mouthed calls for literacy

Angelenos travelling near Bunker Hill were met with an interesting message on a road sign on Friday.


The message itself doesn’t pose any threat, but the fact that the road sign can be changed does. The company responsible for the sign has confirmed that this one and another close by were hacked, but didn’t disclose how.

I expect that the message was changed by getting physical access to the control box for the sign, which raises two questions:

  1. Was the control box for the sign physically secure?
  2. Was the control box for the sign electronically secure?

This isn’t the first time something like this has happened. Previously, we have had warnings of zombie attacks and incoming poop.


So, if you’re going to leave a big electronic sign in the middle of a busy street, then be sure to do these two things:

  1. Change the default password to something secure.
  2. Put the biggest lock you can find on it.

If you’re interested in the importance of a strong password, read our blog post Why four-letter obscenities as passwords don’t work.