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FBI: researcher admitted to hacking plane in-flight, causing it to “climb”

A newly-published search warrant application shows that an aviation computer security researcher told the FBI that he briefly took control of at least one commercial airliner. The warrant, which was filed in a federal court in New York state, was first published Friday by APTN, a Canadian news site. ( さらに...

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I'm not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but I think this is all B.S. The entertainment system is not connected to the plane's navigational systems in any way that I know of. If the pilot had experienced an unusual deviation from autopilot control, there would have been an AP disconnect and/or warning, or at least a pilot would notice a sudden turn or change in power setting or pitch during straight and level flight enroute. I think this guy is a nut case and the media is making money on it.
A security researcher kicked off a United Airlines flight last month after tweeting about security vulnerabilities in its system had previously taken control of an airplane and caused it to briefly fly sideways, according to an application for a search warrant filed by an FBI agent. Chris Roberts, a security researcher with One World Labs, told the FBI agent during an interview in February that he had hacked the in-flight entertainment system, or IFE, on an airplane and overwrote code on the plane’s Thrust Management Computer while aboard the flight. He was able to issue a climb command and make the plane briefly change course, the document states.
lbjack 1
Yeah, Roberts is probably blowing smoke, but then I'm never comforted by "industry assurances."

They say the entertainment system is isolated from flight control. Well, the route display on our entertainment screens mirrors the EFIS route display in the cockpit, which is linked to the Flight Management System (which executes the flight plan), which is linked to, autopilot, in turn linked to a Thrust Management Computer.

Of course, the route display is only informational, but I want assurance it can't be used as some kind of back door to flight controls. It sounds far-fetched, but I think the farfetched is what hacking aims to achieve. "I bet you can't do that." "I bet I can!"
As much as I enjoyed the wifi route tracking feature on a recent commercial flight....I could do without it if it provides any possible path that would allow the plane's flight director to be interfered with in any manner....the fact is would be hackers have no way of really knowing what consequences their actions may have including data loss, system crash, locked controls, etc.
canuck44 1
Researcher is just another term for hacker.
Security researchers keep us safe from govt intervention
jbqwik 1
another example: Suppose a salesman appears in your kitchen. He says, "your security system sucks".
You have several options to respond: The usual knee-jerk 911 call is one.
If you make the call you get credit for a bust, send a guy to jail, and try to fix your system.
But how can you be sure the system really fixed? Because, if this 'good guy' can find faults, then, you know, the 'bad guy' can too.
Another option would be to thank the dude for pointing-out the flaws and ask him how he did it.
Sure, these guys do this for the challenge and notoriety, but it seems to me a little cooperation is the smarter thing so that you can appreciate what other things this salesman knows.
I certainly don't know all the facts of this story. Also, I think I'm being stupid and ignorant, too.
And, you know, the knee-jerk is what we do best (think TSA).. .
This so-called researcher should be charged with hijacking a commercial airliner or air-piracy.
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

Feds say Banned Researcher Commandeer Plane

A SECURITY RESEARCHER kicked off a United Airlines flight last month after tweeting about security vulnerabilities in its system had previously taken control of an airplane and caused it to briefly fly sideways, according to an application for a search warrant filed by an FBI agent.
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

Did a Hacker Really Commandeer a Plane?

Can a passenger with a laptop really electronically hijack a plane via its in-flight entertainment system? That's what security researcher Chris Roberts has confessed to doing, according to an FBI search warrant application, but there's little to indicate that such a thing is possible.
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

Security expert told FBI he accessed plane controls mid-flight

A security researcher told federal agents he was able to hack into aircraft computer systems mid-flight numerous times through the in-flight entertainment systems, and at one point he caused a plane he was on to move sideways, according to an FBI agent's affidavit.
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

Hacking Into Aircraft Needs Public Focus After Hacker’s Tweet

A hacker didn’t make a plane fly sideways, but penetration into aircraft flight control systems needs public focus.


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