These days, flying by plane is a rather uncomfortable experience. To begin, you have to get over the prohibitively expensive ticket prices. From that point on, you will have to cope with the reality that a large number of airlines are operating with insufficient personnel, which results in flight cancellations and delays. And today, even if you are fortunate enough to be able to pay for a plane ticket and board one, you have to be concerned that the data aboard the plane may be hacked, which could result in the plane crashing.
What in the name of all that is holy is going on?
A security warning has been issued for thousands of tourist planes all over the world due to the possibility that the electronics used for take-off and landing could be hacked.
The Onboard Performance Tool developed by Boeing was where it all began. It is a smartphone application that allows pilots to make safe and accurate calculations based on factors such as weight, weather, and other data while they are in the middle of a flight.
It's possible that data could be altered by malicious actors thanks to a bug in the program. Because of this, there is a potential for numerous issues to arise, as pilots could be misled into utilizing the incorrect settings, which could even result in an accident.
It has only been reported that a big number of aircraft have the capability of being hacked, but there has been no confirmation either way. In addition, we do not have any idea who these hackers might be or what their ultimate goal is.
When scientists were finally able to zero in on the source of the issue, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in the United States issued a safety warning.
Boeing has stated that they have no knowledge that any of its aircraft are impacted by the issue. In spite of this, a spokesperson for the company stated, We are committed to reviewing unique research that is conducted and presented in a responsible manner and we applaud Pen Test Partners for their professionalism and engagement.
The aircraft manufacturer has also made the decision to take an additional step toward ensuring the safety of their product by publishing a service bulletin in addition to a software upgrade. Their objective is to reduce the possibility of interference, which they acknowledge is currently minimal.
According to Ken Munro of Pen Test Partners, the database included within the software wasn't securely protected, which meant that unauthorized changes might be made to the data. If something like that had occurred, the pilots might have been given inaccurate data and been forced to rely on inaccurate calculations.
The most significant danger is that a plane might go down while the pilot is trying to take off or land because, for instance, the hackers might have altered the length of a particular runway.
When it comes to the software that is utilized by airplanes or airlines, this is not the first time that there has been some kind of security concern.
In the previous year, pilots flying Tuis were utilizing inappropriate settings because software led them to assume the aircraft weighed less than they actually did. Because the software assumed that every guest was a youngster rather than an adult, all of the passengers were given the title "Miss."
As soon as Tui was made aware of the issue, they upgraded both their software and their security immediately.
Researchers working in the field of information security all around the world are quick to point out the numerous ways in which airplanes could be hacked. Meanwhile, authorities maintain that it is mathematically impossible for hackers to take control of any of the electronic systems, whether they are located in ground control or onboard the aircraft themselves.
At this juncture, the most important question you have to ask yourself is whether or not it is safe to travel. Yes, however before you book your flight, you might want to look into the many kinds of aircraft that are available. The FAA has been made aware of the issue, and warnings have been distributed; however, it is now the responsibility of individual airlines to verify that their software has not been compromised by unauthorized users.
It is possible that this will result in a few additional delays. When the flight has already been delayed for two or three hours, though, what's another hour going to do?
The preceding is a summary of an article that originally appeared on News Sloth.