There are risks with being connected, even at sea…

We have spoken about this topic previously.  It continues to come to the forefront.  From an article over at The Next Web:

“Large shipping vessels and aircraft are often equipped with VSAT systems, allowing crewmembers to send and receive messages and access the Internet during voyages. Turns out, some of these VSAT systems are profoundly insecure, and could allow an attacker to gain access, and disrupt communications.

Security researcher x0rz discovered that many VSAT systems can be reached from the public Internet. Not only does this mean they can be tracked through services like Shodan, but some are configured in a way that could see a remote attacker gain access using default credentials.”

The article goes on to discuss tracking.

“Because these systems are publicly accessible, it’s possible to figure out where ships are to a troubling precision. During the interview, x0rz gave me the latitude and longitude of a vessel which he insisted was Russian in origin, due to the language used in the system, and its IP address. John Matherly, founder of Shodan, has also created a map where you can track vessels in real-time.”

A screenshot of Shodan.

Screen Shot 2017-07-19 at 7.56.53 PM

Visit the Shodan site here.


What threat do these capabilities pose to the US Navy?

How will commercially available tracking capabilities impact the Navy’s nascent EMW effort?

How can the Navy leverage similar capabilities?