GPS systems vulnerable to hack attack

Discussion in 'Weapons, Equipment & Rations' started by HectortheInspector, Feb 24, 2010.

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  1. I went to a lecture about this some time ago, and it has been known for many years, mainly because when the system was put up by the Americans they never in a thousand years thought that no-military users would be ever able to use it therefore they did not even bother to encript the signals, they must be kicking themselves now. A bit like when the head of British Telecom said that the mobile phone would never take off, back in the 80s
  2. The implications are quite concerning to say the least. Apart from the obvious defensive possibilities for any enemy with this sort of capability (steering bombs away from their targets), our C3 systems seem to rely heavily on GPS to keep the tempo of ops high. If we can't communicate and coordinate the way we're used to, it'll be like being on the receiving end of blitzkrieg all over again except that the enemy won't necessarily need massed panzer divisions to achieve the effect.

    The scope for Red forces to deliberately induce Blue on Blue or collateral damage are other possibilities that spring to mind.
  3. Indeed. But the real winners here are local asymmetrical forces. They don't need GPS. They know their landscapes already. The Taliban are probably shopping at Radio Shack as I type.
    GPS is so heavily embedded in c3 nowadays, that the loss would be disproportionately effective. Its not just location, its timings, and synchronisation of precision electronic systems.
    Lose GPS and we are back to landline, CLANSMAN and the Mk1 Officer with a Map. Oh, and Nokias, of course.
  4. So Selective Availability and encrypted Gold Codes for military users, must have been for another GPS then.
  5. The bloke who gave the lecture was from Lockheed Martin who at the time were building the next generation satalite, and he told us the above, now this was while I was at the University of Glamorgan about 20 years ago and at that time they were just realising the full potential of the system, and that when they had started putting up the satalites they did not take civillian use into account, they only initialy thought that they would use the system for targeting and navigation of missle carrying submarines, and so lost an enormous amount off money
  6. A few thousand quid? I might be doing myself out of a nice little earner, but the bill would be a lot cheaper if you came to me!

    This has been true for a long time. It can be done easily and cheaply which is why you should never rely on a GPS receiver. However, most military GPS kit is amply protected.

  7. Alas, as I saw with an 'early adopter' (when he marched straight into a hole), Military GPS is usually pre-handicapped by the operator, and can really best be used to diagnose the degree of 'lost' you happen to be. Ultra tech kit in the hands of neanderthals can get you just as lost as old kit in the hands of experts. But with the added handicap of having to carry the batteries.
  8. If you have a think about the power of the signal being received at the GPS antenna and the design of the antenna it should not take you too long to figure out how to mitigate against simple ground mounted jamming systems. If the jammer can take to the skies it it a lot more complicated. I leave it to the reader to think what is happening to the GPS unit in a munition dropped from 10,000M above Terry's Tandy Techno jammer.

    BTW: You can encrypt your message as much as you want, but if it is not being received then so what?

    There are some fairly well known GPS "dark spots" around the globe where GPS just does not work which is why merchant shipping still plots courses on charts.
  9. You could have a lot of fun re-directing the lorrys on the M25 though
  10. guys theres the civy GPS and the military and there different beast, civy ones you can jam for a 5er or get you local Ham todo it, the military one is a lot harder to "spoof" with out big bucks being spent
  11. Any Sat can be spoofed or burnt out.

    If you have the power which you cannot buy in a Tandy shop down the Old Kent road.
  12. get with the times granddad its now maplins :)

    but jamming a gps signal is a piece of pi2s so you wound'nt need to fuc! about with the sats!
  13. That'll explain it, some funny fukcers are sat somewhere telling Tomtoms to send people down footpaths, grrrrr!
  14. [pedant mode] All shipping plots courses on charts. The trick is knowing where you are relative to your planned track. Which is why visual fixing, radar, astro-navigation and other radio navaids are still in use, albeit to varying degrees. [/pedant mode]