Hackers from AnonSec have reportedly hacked NASA, leaking 276GB of private data and attempting to crash a $222m drone into the ocean, according to InfoWars. The data dump includes 631 videos from aircraft and weather radars, 2,143 flight logs, and the e-mail addresses and phone numbers of 2,414 NASA employees.
After purchasing an “initial foothold” into NASA’s network from someone familiar with its internal security, AnonSec began experimenting with hacking into various systems, eventually brute forcing its way into the networks for the Glenn Research Center, Goddard Space Flight Center, and the Dryden Flight Research Center, through which it was able to access aircraft flight logs from each centre’s network-attached storage (NAS) device.
Soon after, AnonSec realised that some of these flight paths were instructions sent to NASA’s Global Hawk drone. AnonSec then replaced NASA’s sanctioned flight paths with its own malicious version (see map below) in an effort to crash it into the Pacific Ocean. NASA ground control noticed the discrepancy during the Global Hawk’s flight, however, and prevented the crash.
“Nasa has been breached more times than most people can honestly remember… However, this hack into Nasa wasn’t initially focused on drones [sic] data and upper atmosphere chemical samples. In fact the original breach into Nasa systems wasn’t even planned, it was caught up in a gozi virus spread,” AnonSec wrote. “People might find this lack of security surprising but its [sic] pretty standard from our experience. Once you get past the main lines of defense, its [sic] pretty much smooth sailing propagating through a network as long as you can maintain access.”
NASA has yet to comment on the incident.