As crazy as it sounds, one man allegedly told the FBI that he was able to hack into a plane mid-flight. And he’s been talking about these sorts of exploits for years. A security researcher by the name of Chris Roberts has been accused by the federal government of hacking into a plane computer system. This past weekend the FBI issued a search warrant application, detailing a few of the hacks he allegedly performed, Wired reports. Though the researcher is now backtracking about what sort of in-flight hacking he performed, now you can see firsthand his previous boasts. Uploaded in November of 2012, a YouTube video shows a presentation made by Roberts called “By Land, By Sea, By Air” for the GrrCON hacking conference. In it, the researcher talks about hacking methods aimed at various modes of transportation. The description said, “This time we’re going to release a few ‘options’ for DIY take-overs.” At around 19 minutes into the presentation Roberts turned his attention toward planes. He mentioned a flight he took earlier in the week. While flying on this plane, Roberts said he “made friends with the firewall.” The researcher continued describing his uninvited in-flight network tour until he came upon a vulnerable open-sourced web server in the plane’s network called an Apache Tomcat. “It’s not patched,” he told the audience. “Have fun with it,” he paused chuckling to himself, “carefully.” Roberts deemed all of this airplane hacking as “simple stuff.” After describing these vulnerabilities in the in-flight system, Roberts ended this section with a challenge:
I CHALLENGE YOU: NEXT TIME YOU’RE ON THE AIRPLANE THAT HAS GO-GO WIRELESS, SEE HOW FAR THROUGH THE FIREWALL YOU CAN GET. SEE IF YOU CAN GET TO THE GROUND-BASE COMMUNICATION THAT THEY USE. SEE IF YOU CAN GET TO THE INTELLIBUS ARCHITECTURE. PLEASE DON’T TAKE THE AIRPLANE OUT OF THE SKY.