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Iraqi Militants can use Cyber Attacks too

Iraqi insurgents have used existing, readily available technology, to hack into image feeds for US Predator drones, according to an article in the Wall Street Journal. Using software such as SkyGrabber, available for less than $30 via the internet, Shiite insurgents were able to intercept live video feeds from Predator drones.

While there is no evidence that the insurgents had the capacity to control the drones, the ability to see live images provides useful tactical intelligence to insurgent groups, particularly as the US comes to rely more heavily on Predator drones.The ability to see the images not only tells insurgents what areas are being targeted for intelligence collection and combat operations but also sheds light on specific methods like flight patterns, etc. used by the military.

The US military noticed the problem last year when gathering intelligence from a militant computer. The computer contained video footage captured from Predator drones. According to defense officials, the US is seeking to rectify the issue by encrypting the data sent from Predator drones.

It also appears that some drone video footage has been intercepted in Afghanistan as well. The US has been aware of the flaw since the peacekeeping mission in the Balkans during the 1990s but have only recently moved to correct the problem.

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