Friday, October 08, 2010

You’ve Got To Admit

This is pretty funny.

A phone application that threatens security

”The Plane Finder AR application, developed by a British firm for the Apple iPhone and Google's Android, allows users to point their phone at the sky and see the position, height and speed of nearby aircraft.”

Shazam!!! How’d it do that Sergeant Carter?

”The programme, sold for just 1.79 pounds in the online Apple store, has now been labelled an 'aid to terrorists' by security experts and the US Department of Homeland Security is also examining how to protect airliners.”

Golly! What’s that? About 3 bucks American?

”The new application works by intercepting the so-called Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcasts (ADS-B) transmitted by most passenger aircraft to a new satellite tracking system that supplements or, in some countries, replaces radar.”

Surprise! Surprise! Surprise!

50 billion dollars worth of NextGen infrastructure perverted by a 3 dollar computer program you can run on your phone. The article concentrates on the threat to civilian aircraft. But if military flights are going to mix with civilian flights (and they do, every day) then military flights will be using ADS-B too and they can be tracked also. Helicopters, cargo flights, fighters, bombers, Special Air Missions, the whole kit and kaboodle. There are enough scenarios there to keep us in thriller novels for years.

Keep in mind, everyone in the aviation business has realized this for years. This isn’t a new threat. It’s just new to the people that have been (unknowingly) funding it all along -- the taxpayers and their governments.

Don Brown
October 8, 2010


Elaine said...

When you go to the page for "Plane Finder AR" in the iTunes store, you are cautioned that you should first download the "Plane Finder Free" app. Apparently the issue is that Plane Finder is hooked into the database for air traffic in Europe, but not so much for the US. Company suggests you get the free app to confirm the utility for your area before spending money for one of their more advanced apps.

Charles Pergiel said...

If there is anything stupider than a bureaucracy, I don't think we've found it yet.

So I'm going to focus on the positive: "There are enough scenarios there to keep us in thriller novels for years." Yay!