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F-35 data compromised

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posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 07:29 AM
Several TERABYTES of F-35 data, including design and electronics information have stolen by computer spies. Computer systems related to the project have been penetrated at least as far back as 2007, with intrusions going on in 2008, but no one knows for sure what data was stolen. The spies put in code that encrypts the data as it's going out. The most recent intrusions appear to have gone after the maintenance computer on the aircraft. The F-35 relies on 7.5 million lines of code to operate systems, by far the most code of any fighter in inventory.

According to the article investigators have traced the spies "with a high level of certainty" to known Chinese IP addresses. Personally, I think the first thing whoever was behind this would do is to set up a fake IP and frame someone else for doing it.

Whoever is doing it, the information that has been stolen can make it easier to defend against the JSF. The only good news is that primary systems like flight controls are physically separate from any possible data intrusion, as well as the most secret information relating to the program.

Ironically, a report recently issued by the Project on Government Oversight revealed that the F-35 was vulnerable to hackers.

F-35 Hackers

[edit on 4/21/2009 by Zaphod58]

posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 08:41 AM
I just started a thread in the breaking news forum about this news

I was surprised you had not picked this info before me ... I just didn't look at the right place.

Great minds think alike ... or so they say

posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 08:56 AM
I beat you by an hour actually.

Actually, I found it almost by accident. I was busy digging into some other stuff, and went back to hit one of the better aviation sources, and found several very interesting links, including this one, and one where Gates and the Pentagon may be lying out their teeth about the KC-X split buy option.

posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 09:08 AM
Well if it's true what some are saying about the Chinese having all sorts of back doors built into the hardware itself (mostly the chips I'd imagine) then pulling stunts like this is pretty much giving away their A game... I wonder if something big is coming up? (well something big is always around the corner, but you know what I mean).

Or maybe it was opportunistic... Or even more likely they spend billions on an aircraft and a few hundred on each computer running Windows! - wouldn't even surprise me if a laptop was stolen and sold on ebay giving someone some passwords.

posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 09:14 AM
I can't understand why this sensitive info was on a computer that was connected to the net. Can't they just make a separate closed-circuit network for top secret info ? I'm not a specialist in computers, but I would think that the pentagon has some of the top. Or maybe they wanted to have this info stolen, disinformation at a large scale ?

posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 09:28 AM
reply to post by grandnic

Because so many contractors are involved in so many different aspects of the program, that it's easier for them to transmit the data electronically, than it is to print everything out, courier it to whoever needs it, and then put it back on another computer.

Any aircraft project like this you're probably talking 50+ contractors at any given time, if not in the hundreds or more.

posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 09:40 AM
As posted in the other thread, I just can't understand how this can happen, why are these machines connected to the net in the first place and what kind of security is there to protect this secret infomation.
I think the pentagon has a lot to answer for, this just stinks of the same kind of thing as the Gary Mcinnion case, lazy people doing jobs that don't understand the security needs.
Peoples heads should role for this, as quite a few countries are relying on this craft as the first line of defence, is that even possible now?? I would not want to go into war knowing that my enemy already know all there was to know about my aircraft.

posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 09:51 AM
It wouldnt surprise me if the hackers managed to obtain the data through Lockheed rather than any official source such as the Pentagon, it seems to me its more a case of developers trying to get their hands on specific data than randomly trying to hack servers.

The F-35 was a joint project by Lockhhed, Northrop and BAE as a race given by the US military to see who could design the best capability joint fighter of the 21st century (the FA-22 being the winner.)

posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 11:42 AM
i can actually understand why they went for this system and not the primary control system

this has access the the electronic suite

posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 06:36 PM
reply to post by Kurokage

At times, you're talking about several HUNDRED different companies, all trying to get data to the primary contractor. It's cheaper, and easier, if they send it electronically than it is to send it hard copy.

posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 06:39 PM

This means we are going to have ANOTHER computer security stand-down. Last time, it was because some idiot (or spy - I'm not convinced these people are as stupid as they try to sound) somehow placed classified information about the President's Black Hawk in a share file on a peer-to-peer program......

Now, if memory serves me correctly, there was a thread started somewhere about a "Chinese JSF." I can't remember if it was months or years ago. All indicators were that it was the usual Chinese posturing.

However, need I bring up the incident with the Avro plant, the Arrow, and the MiG-25?

We need to wake up and realize that we're in another 'cold war,' of sorts, with China. Which is pretty serious, considering they make a lot of our stuff, and are the most likely architects/beneficiaries of corporate sabotage/espionage against Western firms.

posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 09:41 PM

China denies its cyber-spies hacked into the Pentagon's most expensive weapons programme
But does any one really think they would hold their hands up and say 'Oh you cwafty Americans... You caught us!'

posted on Apr, 23 2009 @ 01:41 PM
Slightly off point but does anyone have a copy of the pictures of the unmanned F-35 UCAV variant circulated a while back (specifically Murcielago's ones...) at the following thread:

Thanks all for your help!

posted on Apr, 24 2009 @ 12:39 AM
reply to post by Janitor

In real life their is no UCAV variant of the F-35.

posted on Apr, 26 2009 @ 12:21 AM
This is why it's a really dumb idea to have government computers with highly classified information being run on Windows XP or other Microsoft operating systems. There are still thousands of possible exploits, many of which computer experts don't find out about until it's too late.

If they were smart they'd design there own operating system. Hell, a Mac would be more secure by far.

To me this is plane ignorant or someone was paid off.

We most likely don't have any details to what the operating system the government computers were being run on or what type of attack was used.

[edit on 26-4-2009 by oconnection]

[edit on 26-4-2009 by oconnection]

posted on Apr, 27 2009 @ 03:18 PM
reply to post by oconnection

The problem is the people operating the system, not the system, itself. It doesn't matter who designs it, when you have moles/rats/leaks - no software or hardware firewall is going to keep your data secure.

My grandpa said it best... everyone needs money - and some people will always believe they need more than what they are already getting.

Also, as I understand it, the computers were the property of the contractors - not the DoD. There's a substantial difference. All DoD computers that have a classification level above "Unclassified" or "Confidential" are on their own separate networks and have no contact with the outside world (assuming some idiot doesn't connect it to the outside world) - many classified systems are RF-shielded (for reasons other than protection against EMP) to prevent an external device from monitoring the electromagnetic emissions from being monitored (this would also mean many use fiber-optic hard-lines that are virtually impossible to monitor without first severing the connection).

Anything 'touched' by that classified system/network becomes classified, itself. If I place a flash-drive into a Top Secret system - that flash drive is now Top Secret and is subject to the handling protocol of Top Secret media.

However - the contractors, who specialize in the development of various technologies and techniques, are not necessarily bound by such hard standards. A new encryption method, for instance, may be under development utilizing some elements of quantum field theory. The research into that system may be done in one complex in, say, Australia - while the plant responsible for fabricating prototypes and incorporating those into complete systems (such as aircraft or ships) is located here in America. Transmitting information via some form of network becomes much more efficient.

While private networks/relays are often used by these companies (there are more communication satellites in orbit than many people realize) - some of those systems can come into contact with the "internet at large." This could be something as mundane as a single computer on the private network that also connects to the private network; or as scandalous as a 'mole' covertly connecting one of the hubs/nodes to the 'internet at large' via some means.

There are many ways to transmit data, many people working on various projects, and there are far faster transmission speeds and far denser storage devices that have evolved over the past decade.

Think back to 1999. 8GB? That's a little smaller than the average hard drive. Now, it's the average $20 USB drive - small enough to hide in a AA battery casing. Download? That was how you avoided telemarketers for days on end, downloading a hundred megabytes. Now, it's how most people get the majority of the gigabytes of information on their hard drives, streaming several megabytes in mere seconds.

Compare even 1999 to the days when information was carried around in manila folders (only a decade or two earlier). The past thirty years have seen more change in the way information is distributed than the past two centuries. The average person now has access to bandwidth that allows for real-time audio/video communication with another individual anywhere else in the world (provided that other person has access to adequate bandwidth).

Twenty years ago - you wrote letters to people in other states - called them if you wanted to pay long distance fees. Now? You have a portable phone (that fits comfortably in almost any pocket) that can connect to a network that puts you in contact with just about any other phone on the continent - to other nations, depending upon the plan you have purchased.

So, you can see where the issue of information security has become very critical in recent years. Unfortunately, the 90s saw the crippling of the CIA and its respective resources - which put them well behind the game when it came to the issues of 'cyber warfare.' But that's what we get for letting people with little aptitude for foresight make decisions regarding our nation's security.

posted on May, 4 2009 @ 07:02 AM

Originally posted by grandnic
I just started a thread in the breaking news forum about this news

I was surprised you had not picked this info before me ... I just didn't look at the right place.

Great minds think alike ... or so they say

when data is being copied it should flag it up that it being copied or stolen.

why are computer administrators/programmers so stupid and thick?


why does a data storage centre need to be connected the is very stupid.


as spock said once:- military secrets are the most fleeting of all.

[edit on 4-5-2009 by esecallum]

posted on May, 4 2009 @ 10:10 AM

Originally posted by esecallum
why does a data storage centre need to be connected the is very stupid.

What would you propose as an alternative method of exchanging information between, say Lockheed and General Electric?


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