Skip to comments.Insurgents Hack U.S. Drones (WHAT?)
Posted on 12/17/2009 3:15:05 AM PST by Mikey_1962
WASHINGTON -- Militants in Iraq have used $26 off-the-shelf software to intercept live video feeds from U.S. Predator drones, potentially providing them with information they need to evade or monitor U.S. military operations.
Senior defense and intelligence officials said Iranian-backed insurgents intercepted the video feeds by taking advantage of an unprotected communications link in some of the remotely flown planes' systems. Shiite fighters in Iraq used software programs such as SkyGrabber -- available for as little as $25.95 on the Internet -- to regularly capture drone video feeds, according to a person familiar with reports on the matter.
U.S. officials say there is no evidence that militants were able to take control of the drones or otherwise interfere with their flights. Still, the intercepts could give America's enemies battlefield advantages by removing the element of surprise from certain missions and making it easier for insurgents to determine which roads and buildings are under U.S. surveillance.
The drone intercepts mark the emergence of a shadow cyber war within the U.S.-led conflicts overseas. They also point to a potentially serious vulnerability in Washington's growing network of unmanned drones, which have become the American weapon of choice in both Afghanistan and Pakistan.
The Obama administration has come to rely heavily on the unmanned drones because they allow the U.S. to safely monitor and stalk insurgent targets in areas where sending American troops would be either politically untenable or too risky.
The stolen video feeds also indicate that U.S. adversaries continue to find simple ways of counteracting sophisticated American military technologies.
(Excerpt) Read more at online.wsj.com ...
Gee, Ya think?
The Chinese are supplying them with the info on the backdoors they installed in the software in the electronics they sold us to put on our military hardware!
Just kidding. The Chinese are holding on to that info for the day when it’s really useful. ;^)
I find it hard to believe that the video from a surveillance drone is not encrypted.
Whoever it was that made the brilliant decision not to use a secure encrypted link needs to be tossed out of the military at the very least.
Terrorist last words, “Allah shit!”
No prob. It’s part of a secret plot to make it easier to spot the terrorists, and the goofballs fell for it. Now we just look for the guy with a dish strapped to his mule.
Your hypothesis will probably prove to be correct.
Back in the day when I was doing weapons systems design, foreign nationals were pretty much barred from obtaining the required security clearances.
But what the hell. We can get stuff for our systems MUCH cheaper if we use Chinese engineers and build it offshore.
A real sad state of affairs.
“Terrorist last words, Allah shit!
” Alu Goodbye!!!!”
Imperial Japanese Army ... sepiku.
German Wehrmacht... transfer to the eastern front.
Soviet Red Army ... Siberian gulag.
Us ... lateral job reassignment to accounts receivable.
The website is in Russian/English and has excruciatingly poor English grammer. It’s so bad that it sounds like a Russian Govt attempt to disseminate free software to interrupt drones and other items.
If it were up to me I would make it deceptively simple to monitor the frequencies they think are being used to provide the video link. But then I would change the frequency being used and transmit false info directly to their receivers! Send ‘em info that made it look like the drones were somewhere else entirely, all the while honing in on them for a missile attack.
And, it might even be possible to use some very sensitive equipment to locate the receivers being used by them to intercept the stream. What a great way to locate a target for the drones!
Does this software work for intercepting DirectTV? How about ESPN, CNBC, etc.?
Probably. However, there are actual consequences if you get caught doing that.
I got the hell out of the DoD at that point and haven't looked back.
That’s exactly what I was thinking. It’s the perfect opportunity to feed them false info., etc.
I find it hard to believe that the video from a surveillance drone is not encrypted..............
I suspect the video is not encrypted, for the reason, it was intended to be readily available to field units...