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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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In Brief: Fiat Chrysler recalls 1.4 million cars after hacking

From Wire Reports

DETROIT – Fiat Chrysler has decided to recall about 1.4 million cars and trucks in the U.S. just days after two hackers revealed that they took control of a Jeep Cherokee SUV over the Internet.

The company also disclosed in government documents that the hackers got into the Jeep through an electronic opening in the radio and said it would update software to close it. On Thursday, Fiat Chrysler sealed off a loophole in its internal cellular telephone network with vehicles to prevent similar attacks, the automaker said in a statement.

The vulnerability exposed by the hack rippled through the auto industry and drew the attention of government safety regulators, who on Friday opened an investigation into the Jeep incident.

The industry is rapidly adding Internet-connected features such as Wi-Fi and navigation that are convenient for drivers but make the car more vulnerable to outside attacks.

Fed mistakenly posts confidential files

WASHINGTON – The Federal Reserve said Friday it mistakenly posted confidential economic projections on its public website last month.

In a brief statement, the Fed said it has asked its inspector general to investigate what it called an inadvertent disclosure.

The incident occurred at a time when the central bank is already the subject of investigations by the Justice Department, a House committee and its inspector general involving the disclosure of confidential information from a 2012 Fed meeting.

The staff projections are prepared for the Fed’s closed-door meetings and are not normally released for a period of five years.

The economic projections were included in a file that contained information on the computer model the Fed uses to forecast the economy. Once the mistake was discovered Tuesday, the Fed said it decided not to remove the data since it was already public.

Real estate sales down 6.8 percent in June

WASHINGTON – Fewer Americans bought new homes in June, a possible sign that the real estate market is cooling down after months of hot sales.

The Commerce Department said Friday that new-home sales slumped 6.8 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 482,000. The report also revised May sales down to a rate of 517,000 from 546,000.

The June slowdown indicates the potential limits of the earlier momentum. New-home purchases have vaulted up 21.2 percent through the first half of 2015, although the government sales report is volatile on a monthly basis.

But last month’s slump could muddle expectations that the real estate sector will spur stronger economic growth in the coming months.

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