Space hacking

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For cybergeeks bored with interrupting ecommerce on America On-Line and Amazon.com, NASA may soon be making possible an even loftier goal: hacking satellites.

NEW SCIENTIST reports that NASA has commissioned the British company Surrey Satellite Technology to research the use of Internet technology to control satellites. Last week, the company launched an experimental satellite — believed to be the first to be controlled via the Internet — from a base in Russia. Internet-guided satellites would be cheaper, and would allow operators to access their spacecraft from any PC at any time.

But it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see that NASA operators might not be the only ones with access to the satellites — any adept hacker could conceivably take control of a satellite from his bedroom. NASA itself recently admitted its vulnerability: Last week, the space agency acknowledged that a hacker was able to overload its computers and interrupt communication on a space shuttle mission in 1997. NASA says it has recorded about 500,000 attempted hacks in the past year alone.

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Fact:

In-depth journalism that investigates the powerful takes real money and is so damn important right now.But it doesn’t take a Mother Jones investigation to know that billionaires and corporations will never fund the type of reporting (like they do politicians) we do that exists to help bring about change. Instead, our mission-driven journalism is made possible by people power, and has been for 46 years now since our founding as a non-profit.

In “TITLE TK” Monica Bauerlein writes about the perilous moment we’re in, and why it’s so important that we raise $325,000 by the time November’s midterms are decided so we can be ready to throw everything we have at the big issues facing the nation no matter what happens. Please help MoJo’s people-powered journalism with a donation today.

$400,000 to go!

payment methods

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