Commercial Flights Are Experiencing 'Unthinkable' GPS Attacks and Nobody Knows What to Do

“This immediately sounds unthinkable,” OPSGROUP [an international group of pilots and flight technicians] said in its public post about the incidents. “The IRS (Inertial Reference System) should be a standalone system, unable to be spoofed. The idea that we could lose all on-board nav capability, and have to ask [air traffic control] for our position and request a heading, makes little sense at first glance— especially for state of the art aircraft with the latest avionics. However, multiple reports confirm that this has happened.”

Humphreys and others have been sounding the alarm about an attack like this occurring for the past 15 years. In 2012, he testified by Congress about the need to protect GNSS from spoofing. “GPS spoofing acts like a zero-day exploit against aviation systems,” he told Motherboard. “They’re completely unprepared for it and powerless against it.”

Always great when security concerns go unaddressed :grimacing: