The benefits of these technologies have been huge for aviation, but security should be improved before the wrong hacker causes chaos by jamming a plane's GPS capabilities or entering false traffic info for ghost flights.
What happens when a hacker gets bored and curious about airplane tracking systems? In the case of Brad “RenderMan” Haines, aka @ihackedwhat, a very interesting Def Con 20 presentation happened called “Hacker + Airplanes = No Good Can Come Of This.”
When Haines first started talking about using apps to find airplanes and track flights, my mind flashed to Tom Clancy who mentioned a smartphone app like Plane Finder being used by terrorists in his novel Against All Enemies. But Haines was talking reality and not fiction about how easy it is for anyone to track planes in near real time with Plane Finder, FlightRadar, FlightAware and RadarVirtuel. Haines talked about the NextGen Air Traffic Control (ATC) and those apps which use Automated Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) which will be mandatory in the United States by 2020 and in Europe by 2030.
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