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Print 33 comment(s) - last by Reclaimer77.. on Jun 27 at 12:35 PM

Team repeatedly takes over flying drone using $1000 DIY spoofer

Professor Todd Humphreys and his team from the University of Texas at Austin's Radionavigation Laboratory recently demonstrated the ease with which hackers can take over drones that rely on GPS signals. The ability to control a flying unmanned aircraft by spoofing the GPS signal should come as no surprise, considering it was used against the United States by Iran. In that instance, the U.S. drone was tricked into simply landing where the Iranian hackers wanted it.
 
According to the University of Texas team, there is a concern that compromised drones could be turned into weapons. The FAA is set to open skies over the United States to drone fleets for different uses including surveillance by law enforcement officials.
 
Humphreys opines, "Spoofing a GPS receiver on a UAV is just another way of hijacking a plane."
 
The scary part of the demonstration given by the professor and his team is that anyone with the right tools can take over the GPS-guided drone. Spoofing is when technology is used against drone that is able to manipulate navigation computers with false information that the drone sees as real. Humphreys and his team used what they call the most advanced spoofer ever built, and it costs only $1,000 to construct.
 
The GPS spoofer is able to send signals to the flying drone that are stronger than those from GPS satellites in orbit. The attack Humphreys demonstrated begins by matching the signal of the GPS system so the drone believes nothing has changed. Once the drone is fooled into following his GPS signal, his own commands are sent to the onboard computer, giving the team complete control of the drone.
 
Humphreys told Fox News, "In 5 or 10 years you have 30,000 drones in the airspace. Each one of these could be a potential missile used against us."
 
Humphreys and his team made a trip to the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico where officials from the FAA and the Department of Homeland Security watched as Humphrey and his team repeatedly took control of over a drone from a nearby hilltop. The Department of Homeland Security is currently working with researchers like Humphreys and others to identify and mitigate the possibility of GPS interference.

Source: Fox News



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RE: That's pretty bad
By Reclaimer77 on 6/26/2012 1:26:53 PM , Rating: 2
Gamer I love how in your typical ignorant anti-"industrial military complex" rant, and idiotic evil shareholders shpeal, your entire premise is false. Not only that but you couldn't even be bothered to check for yourself that encryption most certainly IS used, and everything you just said is false.

Only a colossal idiot would believe the already-existing military GPS band wouldn't be used in drones. Or that somehow this would be done to save money. Money? All it's doing is tuning into a different frequency than the civilian GPS.


RE: That's pretty bad
By gamerk2 on 6/26/2012 2:33:00 PM , Rating: 2
Reclaimer, since I WORK in the industry, some advice: shut it.


RE: That's pretty bad
By Reclaimer77 on 6/26/2012 2:56:17 PM , Rating: 2
Much like how a burger-flipper can boast that he's "in the food industry", your claims of being in the military procurement industry does not impress me.

No way you hold any position of consequence with the manner in which you post. Zero chance.


RE: That's pretty bad
By Reclaimer77 on 6/26/2012 3:20:30 PM , Rating: 2
I mean you didn't even know that drones used secure military GPS. Something anyone can find using Google. So it's pretty funny that you're trying to pull the industry expert card now, when it's clear your opening post was nothing but an ill-informed ignorant anti-military anti-corporatist hatefest.


RE: That's pretty bad
By johnsmith9875 on 6/26/2012 4:51:20 PM , Rating: 2
That's how ALL contracting works. If it isn't in the contract, the vendor won't give it to you.

If you agree to buy cars with 1 wheel missing, the vendor will deliver said cars with 1 wheel missing.


"And boy have we patented it!" -- Steve Jobs, Macworld 2007














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