A team of researchers at the University of Texas successfully hijacked a government drone by “spoofing” its GPS signal, with parts costing only $1,000, RT News reported.
In a test with the Department of Homeland Security, Professor Todd Humphreys and his team from the Austin Radionavigation Laboratory mimicked the GPS signals directing the drone and wrested control from the intended operators sending their signals by satellite.
A hijacked drone is not only useless, it is potentially dangerous.
Humphreys reportedly told Fox News “In five or ten years you have 30,000 drones in the airspace. Each one of these could be a potential missile used against us.”
According to RT News, domestic drones are already being used by Homeland Security and other governmental agencies, and several small-time law enforcement groups have accumulated UAVs of their own as they await clearance from the Federal Aviation Administration.
Humphreys and his team have shown that anyone with the right know-how and $1,000 dollars could turn a domestic drone into a missile.