Black Eye for Satcom at Black Hat?

This week, at Black Hat USA in Las Vegas, Ruben Santamarta is to present his findings of how he was able to hack satcom terminals, at least in theory.

At first glance, especially with lots of alarming details from DailyTech, you’d think the party for in-flight WiFi via satcom was over. Their piece was based on a Reuters story, which wasn’t as frightening.

The theoretical hack involves low-bandwidth services using Inmarsat and Thuraya. In-flight broadband uses more bandwidth and wasn’t really included in the study. Managing unmanned terminals is common in this industry segment.

Take a look at the white paper (PDF) published by IOActive and see for yourself. You can be sure all those mentioned in the 25-page report are asking their engineers if this is indeed possible.

I wouldn’t worry about it much.


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