CyberSecurity Issues–in SPACE?!

Cyber Threats in Space: The New Challenges Ahead

In the last few years, a new space race has been booming among government agencies. Now private space organizations have joined the race! These agencies and organizations are now working on and off the clock to advance into the future of the space age. With the latest communication systems and devices needed to get to this current age in space travel, come brand new security concerns.

One thing that flies under the radar with these new space and rocket technologies is the cybersecurity that goes behind it. These extremely complex systems are just as vulnerable as computers and servers. The challenge ahead for the world of cybersecurity is how do we protect these systems when they are not even on the same planet as we are.

Some security threats we may face in the future:

  • Satellite vulnerabilities – Satellites are becoming more and more vulnerable as they become more and more connected to life below on earth. We must learn how to protect these systems from hacks, jamming, spoofing, or any other security attacks.
  • Aging space technology – We have been sending things into space since the late 1950s, so it is no secret some older technology in space is vulnerable to cyber-attacks. For example, here is an article written on freethink.com that showed how security researchers were able to hack an old satellite. With this outdated tech literally floating in space, another challenge is replacing or securing these satellites.
  • Cybercriminals in space – This sounds like something straight out of a science fiction movie, but it can be a real possibility as space travel becomes more accessible. We have seen examples of commercial space flights in the past few years, and this unlocks a whole new vector in social engineering or physical penetration testing, as the general public has more unrestricted access to space technologies.

Years ago, all of these issues would have seemed like something from a tall tale. However, it’s 2023 and these security threats are now a reality we must face going forward and a new horizon for the world of cybersecurity.