DVD & BLU-RAY
Boeing’s 787 Has More Issues Than Britney
Author: Matt Guschausky
published: 2008-01-06 20:26:57
Now Wired is reporting that there is another problem to add to the list, but it isn’t directly related to airworthiness. One of the neat features of the Dreamliner is that it will offer passengers internet access while in flight. Unfortunately, that service will be connected with the computer systems that also control the aircraft. To call that a security issue is an understatement.
Boeing has said that the problem will be addressed with some physical blocks and some software firewalls, but you don’t need to be Kevin Mitnick to know that isn’t remotely sufficient. The problems can come from any number of angles. There are connections from the ground to the servers onboard the aircraft, and there is no such thing as a completely secured system. If it is connected to the internet, it’s going to be vulnerable to attacks from passengers or the ground. Maintenance crews will also have access to some of the flight systems from the ground, but that just adds more layers to the problem. How secure are those crews and their sites? There has been a move in recent years to outsource maintenance jobs to other countries as well. Planting a person into one of those companies wouldn’t be an insurmountable obstacle.
Even if you ignore that, how many computer networks do you know of that don’t slow down when there are too many users hitting the server? Imagine what would happen if the flight was headed to the city where BlizzCon was being held. How many World of Warcraft connections can that system support at once? Hopefully Boeing comes to its senses sooner rather than later. Having a complete physical disconnection between the internet and the flight systems may cost a bit more, but it would be well worth it considering the implications.