Thursday, August 15, 2013

Drones, Horse Flies, Texas Long Horns





Texas Long Horns ain't skeered of little things like drones or for that matter war ships. Having had to deal with horse flies and roving bands of savages, they adapt easily to the times.

University of Texas develop GPS spoofing device that takes over ships and drones

A team of student radio navigation researchers from the University of Texas has developed a “GPS spoofing device” that allows an attacker to take control of a ship’s navigation system.

The UT students successfully hacked a GPS navigation system and took control of a ship’s course.

Their test has exposed a serious potential security threat to everything from ocean liners to oil tankers.

The UT team tested their GPS spoofing device in June on an $80 million 213-foot yacht in the Mediterranean Sea. They were able to change the course the mega-yacht without anyone on the ship knowing.

Students, acting as attackers or hackers, were able to send fake GPS signals to the ship’s civilian navigation system and change its course.

The GPS spoofing device is stealthy. It created a “ghost ship” on the ship’s GPS screen. The ghost ship fools the crew into believing that the ship is on it’s proper course, when in reality the ship is moving in a different direction.

The GPS spoofing device reasearch is bring led by assistant professor Todd Humphreys from the Department of Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics at the Cockrell School of Engineering.

“The ship actually turned, and we could all feel it, but the chart display and the crew saw only a straight line,” Humphreys told the Cockrell School of Engineering’s website.

Drones are also at risk. Last year Humphrey and his team used similar technology to take over a UAV.