Fake GPS Signals in Middle East lead Multiple Aircrafts Astray

January 30, 2024

INCIDENT

GPS spoofing from an unknown source in the Iraq-Iran area is causing complete aircraft navigational system failures in some overflying airliners and business jets. GPS spoofing is “the surreptitious replacement of a true satellite signal that can cause a GPS receiver to output an erroneous position and time”

This novel type of GPS and IRS signal spoofing attack caused over 20 aircraft to suffer complete loss navigation capability over restricted airspace, and caused unintended divergences in flight paths, in the corridor between Iran and the UM686 airway in NW Iraq. As a result, one bizjet almost strayed into Iranian airspace without clearance. This jeopardized the safety of hundreds of lives. GNSS comms are unencrypted and were never expected or designed to cope with this threat.

Incident Date

November 24, 2023

Location

Middle East

Estimated Cost


No cost values disclosed.

Victims

No victims identified

Type of Malware

No Malware identified

Threat Source

No threat source identified