The Air Force Will Let Hackers Try to Hijack an Orbiting Satellite
The US Air Force wants to let hackers attempt to take over a satellite at next year’s Defcon cybersecurity conference in Las Vegas. This year, the Air Force let infosec experts at the conference have a go at an F-15 fighter-jet data system. Because the hackers exposed several severe vulnerabilities, the USAF decided to take advantage of the talents of security experts in this manner again.
The Air Force plans to put out a call for submissions in the near future, allowing researchers with ideas on how satellites may be hacked to share their proposals. A limited number of hackers will be invited to test their ideas. The Air Force will then make a final selection of researchers with the most promising attack strategies. These hackers will participate in a live hacking competition at Defcon next year.
Air Force assistant secretary for acquisition Will Roper explains that “what we’re planning on doing is taking a satellite with a camera, have it pointing at the Earth, and then have the teams try to take over control of the camera gimbals and turn toward the moon.”