Posted on August 18th, 2010
Federal Aviation Administration computer systems remain vulnerable to cyber attacks despite improvements at a number of key radar facilities in the past year, according to a new government review.
The Department of Transportation’s Inspector General said while the FAA has taken steps to install more sophisticated systems to detect cyber intrusions in some air traffic control facilities, most sites have not been upgraded. And there is no timetable yet to complete the project, the IG said.
FAA spokeswoman Laura Brown said the agency is working on a timetable and will notify the IG with that information soon. The FAA also said that upgrades to critical air traffic control systems have taken precedence over the intrusion detection improvements at a number of facilities.
Without the detection abilities, the FAA cannot effectively monitor air traffic control for possible cyber attacks or take action to stop them, the inspector general said in a letter obtained by The Associated Press.
The findings echo broad U.S. government worries about gaps in critical U.S. computer systems and networks that leave them vulnerable to cyber attacks by criminals, terrorists or nation states.
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