News Report: satellites at risk of hacks

Friday, 4 October 2002, 10:06 AM EST

Critical commercial satellite systems relied upon by federal agencies, civilians and the Pentagon are potentially vulnerable to a variety of sophisticated hack attacks that could cause service disruptions, or even send a satellite spinning out of control, according to a new report by the General Accounting Office, the investigative arm of Congress.

The GAO report, dated August 30th but not released publicly until Thursday, criticizes the White House for not taking the vulnerabilities into account in its national cybersecurity planning, a criticism it also extends back to the Clinton administration.

The focus of the report is on satellite systems which are used extensively by the federal government, but like many critical infrastructures are in the hands of the private sector.

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