Drones new target for drug trafficker in US

Unmanned air vehicles (UAV’s) are new instruments for surveillance and are widely used by military and other sensitive agencies, but what will happen if they are being  hacked by the attackers.

According to the reports of the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agency drug traffickers have hacked unmanned air vehicles (UAVs, drones) in order to illegally and secretly cross the US-Mexican border.

Drones used by US military cost millions of dollars, but drones used by other law enforcement agencies are much more cheaper and are prone to GPS spoofing attacks.

UAV’s have GPS receivers, which is used to receive  data from off-orbit satellites and navigate. However drug traffickers  used GPS spoofing technique to illegally send UAV’s wrong coordinates.

After receiving wrong coordinates, drones corrects themselves and leave their normal patrol area. Once they leave their normal area of the GPS jammer & spoofing device, it then tries to correct again, going back to its proper patrol area. It keeps on going back and forward until it remains out of fuel and returns to base, or the traffickers safely crossed the border and turn off their jammers.

The only way to prevent GPS spoofing is to use in built high cost of anti-spoofing  hardware.

 Michael Buscher, CEO of Vanguard Defense Industries said, “this is a very costly module, and also very bulky. Adding such equipment to a drone is not only very expensive but also affects the drone's flight time, something which both the DHS and CBP are not willing to accept.”

The only solution to this security holes is to wait for technology to advance and cut down on its manufacturing prices.

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