ad info

 
CNN.com  technology > computing
    Editions | myCNN | Video | Audio | Headline News Brief | Feedback  

 

  Search
 
 

 
TECHNOLOGY
TOP STORIES

Consumer group: Online privacy protections fall short

Guide to a wired Super Bowl

Debate opens on making e-commerce law consistent

(MORE)

TOP STORIES

More than 11,000 killed in India quake

Mideast negotiators want to continue talks after Israeli elections

(MORE)

MARKETS
4:30pm ET, 4/16
144.70
8257.60
3.71
1394.72
10.90
879.91
 


WORLD

U.S.

POLITICS

LAW

ENTERTAINMENT

HEALTH

TRAVEL

FOOD

ARTS & STYLE



(MORE HEADLINES)
*
 
CNN Websites
Networks image


Hacker-controlled tanks, planes and warships?

Image
Federal Computer Week

March 21, 2000
Web posted at: 11:49 a.m. EST (1649 GMT)

(IDG) -- Army officials are worried that sophisticated hackers and other cybercriminals, including military adversaries, may soon have the ability to hack their way into and take control of major military weapon systems such as tanks and ships.

Speaking this month at the annual Army Directors of Information Management Conference in Houston, Army Maj. Sheryl French, a program manager responsible for the Army's Information Assurance Architecture for the Digitized Force, said the potential exists for hackers to infiltrate the computer systems used in tanks and other armored vehicles. Unlike in the past, today‚s modern tanks and ships are almost entirely dependent on computers, software and data communications links for functions such as navigation, targeting and command and control.

MORE COMPUTING INTELLIGENCE
IDG.net   IDG.net home page
  Federal Computer Week home page
  Can the Net be crime-proofed?
  Microsoft: Bad security, or bad press?
  Device keeps hackers at bay
  Reviews & in-depth info at IDG.net
  E-BusinessWorld
  Year 2000 World
  Questions about computers? Let IDG.net's editors help you
  Subscribe to IDG.net's free daily newsletters
  Search IDG.net in 12 languages
  News Radio
  * Fusion audio primers
  * Computerworld Minute

Although the Pentagon has always had computer security issues to deal with, "we've never had computers" in tanks and armored personnel carriers before, said French, pointing to a picture of an M-1 Abrams Main Battle Tank.

In fact, the Defense Department has already tested and proven that hackers have the ability to infiltrate the command and control systems of major weapons, including Navy warships. According to a training CD-ROM on information assurance, published by the Defense Information Systems Agency, an Air Force officer sitting in a hotel room in Boston used a laptop computer to hack into a Navy ship at sea and implant false navigation data into the ship‚s steering system.

"Yes, this actually happened," the CD-ROM instructs military personnel taking the course. "Fortunately, this was only a controlled test to see what could be done. In reality, the type of crime and its objective is limited only by people‚s imagination and ability."

John Pike, a defense and intelligence analyst with the Federation of American Scientists, said that although there are well-known security gaps in the commercial systems that the Army plans to use on the battlefield, hacking into tanks and other weapons may prove to be too difficult for an enemy engaged in battle.

"The problem for the enemy is that computer security vulnerabilities will almost certainly prove fleeting and unpredictable," said Pike, adding that such tactics would be nearly impossible to employ beyond the random harassment level.



RELATED STORIES:
Net crime does pay for cops
February 24, 2000
Avoiding future denial-of-service attacks
February 23, 2000
Did your server help the cybervandals?
February 15, 2000
Hacker hunters follow lead to Germany
February 13, 2000
Denial of service hackers take on new targets
February 9, 2000

RELATED IDG.net STORIES:
Can the Net be crime-proofed?
(PC World Online)
Collected resources on the Military and IT
(Computerworld)
Microsoft: Bad security, or bad press?
(IDG.net)
Device keeps hackers at bay
(NetworkWorld Fusion)
Army dumps NT, citing security; IE 5.0 flaw reported
(InfoWorld)
Nuisance break-ins plague Army, Agriculture sites
(PC World Online)
Justice nabs hacker of Army computers
(FCW)
E-BusinessWorld
(IDG.net)

RELATED SITES:
The U.S. Army Homepage

Note: Pages will open in a new browser window
External sites are not endorsed by CNN Interactive.

 Search   

Back to the top   © 2001 Cable News Network. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines.