MUMBAI: At least 20 airline and corporate jets overflying Iran were targeted with fake GPS signals over the fortnight. These signals were sent from the ground and were strong enough to infiltrate the aircraft’s navigation system, override the true satellite GPS signals and steer the aircraft off their course. Navigation system failure was so complete that pilots had to seek guidance from ATC to know aircraft location.

Though this form of GPS signal interference has been around for over a decade, this was the first time that civilian passenger flights were targeted to such a degree.
GPS signal spoofing is “the surreptitious replacement of a true satellite signal with a manipulated signal that can cause a GPS receiver to output an erroneous position & time”, states US Radio Technical Commission for Aeronautics.

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