New York: As usage of drones becoming very usual. Military personnel use drones for surveillance and to target insurgents while scientists use drones to monitor animals and the environment, even it is planned to use it for delivery.
But because drones are computer-controlled, they’re vulnerable to hacking, Samy Kamkar, an entrepreneur and hacker best known for publicizing the location tracking of iPhones and Android devices, posted a video online in which he shows how to modify a Parrot AR Drone so that it can pick up the signals sent to other drones in the area, cut them off from their owners and hijack their functions.
The other drones were vulnerable in part because Parrot, the company that made them, bought a block of MAC addresses, which identify the wireless computers in their drones. The MAC address uniquely identifies each one — in fact, every computer and mobile device has such an address. But since Kamkar knew the range of the MAC addresses, he said it was relatively easy for the computer on his drone to simply search through those addresses until it found the one for the drone he was trying to hack.
With just a bit more effort, Kamkar has shown, it is possible to take over the drone’s control systems as well. Military security for those systems is undoubtedly better than on a toy, but that does not make it invulnerable.