Did Iran Just Retaliate For Stuxnet? Computer Virus Infects US Predator Drone System

Tyler Durden's picture

It was only a matter of time: the weakest link in the otherwise awesome idea that is a remote-controlled military, represented by the thousands of Predator and Reaper drones, has always been its biggest strength: the fact that it is remote-controlled. Which means that with no person on location, the system has always been susceptible to infiltration in the form of intermediation between the offsite pilot and the actual equipment. Such as a virus. And as Wired reports, a viral infestation, the biggest nightmare for the the US drone fleet, has just struck. "A computer virus has infected the cockpits of America’s Predator and Reaper drones, logging pilots’ every keystroke as they remotely fly missions over Afghanistan and other warzones. The virus, first detected nearly two weeks ago by the military’s Host-Based Security System, has not prevented pilots at Creech Air Force Base in Nevada from flying their missions overseas. Nor have there been any confirmed incidents of classified information being lost or sent to an outside source. But the virus has resisted multiple efforts to remove it from Creech’s computers, network security specialists say. And the infection underscores the ongoing security risks in what has become the U.S. military’s most important weapons system." Well that is truly Ironic: the "western" world tried to cripple (and failed) Iran's nuclear program with Stuxnet; it will, then, be supremely ironic if Iran retaliates by maxing out the credit cards of the US Air Force logging the credit card number as pilots purchase stuff online, and uses these to buy weaponized plutonium from Russia using Uncle Sam's credit card. 


“We keep wiping it off, and it keeps coming back,” says a source familiar with the network infection, one of three that told Danger Room about the virus. “We think it’s benign. But we just don’t know.”

Ah yes, the good old "it's a benign viral infestation of a top-secret military system" excuse. It's a classic. Works everytimg too.

And more:

Military network security specialists aren’t sure whether the virus and its so-called “keylogger” payload were introduced intentionally or by accident; it may be a common piece of malware that just happened to make its way into these sensitive networks. The specialists don’t know exactly how far the virus has spread. But they’re sure that the infection has hit both classified and unclassified machines at Creech. That raises the possibility, at least, that secret data may have been captured by the keylogger, and then transmitted over the public internet to someone outside the military chain of command.


Drones have become America’s tool of choice in both its conventional
and shadow wars, allowing U.S. forces to attack targets and spy on its
foes without risking American lives. Since President Obama assumed
office, a fleet of approximately 30 CIA-directed drones have hit targets
in Pakistan more than 230 times; all told, these drones have killed more than 2,000 suspected militants and civilians, according to the Washington Post.
More than 150 additional Predator and Reaper drones, under U.S. Air
Force control, watch over the fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq. American
military drones struck 92 times in Libya between mid-April and late August. And late last month, an American drone killed top terrorist Anwar al-Awlaki — part of an escalating unmanned air assault in the Horn of Africa and southern Arabian peninsula.


But despite their widespread use, the drone systems are known to have
security flaws. Many Reapers and Predators don’t encrypt the video they
transmit to  American troops on the ground. In the summer of 2009, U.S.
forces discovered “days and days and hours and hours” of the drone footage on the laptops of Iraqi insurgents. A $26 piece of software allowed the militants to capture the video.

Next up: "terrorists" intercept control of America's drone system. That may explain why authorities are mulling the consequences of a New York nuclear strike. News not at eleven.

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arm50's picture

I blame China or Bush

Black Forest's picture

it may be a common piece of malware that just happened to make its way into these sensitive networks.

Or bored Afghan school children.

Ahmeexnal's picture

And as many already knew, the OWS and it's subsidiary "movements" is nothing more than Ogolfer's re-election campaign:



“Some of them are volunteers. Some of them aren’t. I can’t identify them. I’m not going to get into an identification game.”


It's easy to identify who are the ones paid and who are the "useful idiotic sheep" who fall into the trap...




George Soros-funded Obama campaign front group MoveOn.org is actively attempting to hijack the growing Occupy Wall Street movement in a bid to push the Obama administration’s tax agenda, and is now clearly trying to steer the narrative of the protests to ostracize End the Fed advocates and anyone opposing tax hikes for the middle class.




Troll Magnet's picture

shit...i hope i don't get shot by "mistake" now?

wanklord's picture

The only way Barry & Associates (including the Zionist warmongers) can justify a war against the Islamic Republic of Iran is by staging another false flag attack on continental United States: most likely a controlled nuclear explosion (dirty bomb) targeting a major urban concentration that may kill dozens of thousands of civilians. This operation will be carried out by the CIA in partnership with Mossad and MI6 to subsequently be blamed on AlQaeda working in conjunction with elements of Iran's IRGC and Pakistan's ISI. Besides that, Americans are a bunch of stupid animals easy to manipulate and subdue. The psychological impact of this event will elicit the brute and ignorant populace to demand a massive retaliation against the alleged perpetrators (explicitly Iran); the Obama administration will need the unconditional support of these mules in order to further their agenda.

Thadius T. Crunk's picture

So we've heard, Wanklord. Thanks.

Fukushima Sam's picture

What a bunch of fucking idiots the people running these systems must be.  It is not that hard to keep a critical network separate and quarantined.  And to ensure that software updates are not the vector for a virus you have other software that checks the behavior of the systems afterwards to ensure no anomalies.  Must be amateur hour over at military IT.  I guess we should not be surprised...

I'm sure when the drones start bombing Americans within American borders they now will have a convenient scapegoat.

Au_Ag_CuPbCu's picture

Look at the bright side.  According to some "experts" (read fucking morons) a nuclear blast in New York would be very beneficial to the economy.

zhandax's picture

I guess I should look at who is posting before I read the drivel, but from habit, I don't.  I do, however, instantly recognize, as soon as I see the phrase "stupid animals" that it is wanklord trolling again.  Dood, google some new adjectives.

I only kill chickens and wheat's picture

“We keep wiping it off, and it keeps coming back,” says a source familiar with the network infection. Yes, obviously familiar with them because he/she could never figure out how to get them off their home PC, let alone the drone control net.

blunderdog's picture

That quote was out of context anyway.  He was talking about a sticky spot that keeps showing up in the middle of the space bar.  Weird, huh?

knukles's picture

Hey!  I gots one-o-dem, too!  Dis shit's creepy....

A Nanny Moose's picture

This would explain the burning sensation whenever they pvp

SIOP's picture

"What a bunch of fucking idiots the people running these systems must be.  It is not that hard to keep a critical network separate and quarantined. "


I couldnt agree more.

Jack Napier's picture

@Fukushima Sam, this story doesn't even do their idiocy justice. I wonder how many here heard about the guy who hacked into the US gov because all their Windoze admin passwords were blank. He went to them and told them this, because he saw domains all over the world connected, likely stealing national secrets, but all they did was throw the book at him. This is the type of security you get from a company like HBGary apparently.

A Nanny Moose's picture

Indeed. It is commong practive to air-gap user networks from those networks with things that go boom or that make a big mess when they go boom....like gas pipelines, nuke plants, dams, sewage treatment plants, mac n' cheese lines (flour is quite explosive in aerosol form)

FeralSerf's picture

Tell that to the Iranians.

philipat's picture

It's probably just another deliberate leak to justify another budget increase of an additional gazillion dollars?

Think for yourself's picture

There's a reason that Jericho tv series got canceled. Hint: find what is still out there and listen to it.

Think for yourself's picture

There's a reason that Jericho tv series got canceled. Hint: find what is still out there and listen to it.

Jack Burton's picture

Jericho was good television. Once it became clear where the shows plot was going, you just knew it would get cancelled due to bad ratings.

They were operating too close to a possible reality scenario.


buyingsterling's picture

Us 'mules' are the last major concentration of people on earth who retain most of their right to self defense. That makes everyone else look like the dumb ones - and the real sheeple.

eureka's picture

Yep, Ahme... - and consequently, Tyler, - Iran needs no plutonium to destroy U.S.

U.S. is destroying itself very well. This figment of imagination "Melting Pot" - is hot - with general fragmentation and social disintegration.

By next summer it will be clear to all that the U.S. - this pseudo union - is crumbling.

mkkby's picture

Iran is a proxy for China.  China can easily infect all our critical systems.  They make components for everything we use.  Their "students" have taken most of the slots at our colleges, tech companies and even national labs.

Here's a brilliant idea.  Let's invite 5 million of their of their troops over to do joint drills with our guys.  /sarcasm off

Steaming_Wookie_Doo's picture

Hah! They'd be done for. Why, you may ask? Of course, after coming to America, getting introduced to the joys of shopping, pornography, beer, BBQ and (if we're really smart) blowjobs from accomodating locals, I think your Chicom grunts will be defecting faster than you can say "Hit me again, and put it on that guy's tab". Of course, then they'd be as bad as the locals, but threat neutralized.

Nobody For President's picture

"Here's a brilliant idea.  Let's invite 5 million of their of their troops over to do joint drills with our guys.  /sarcasm off"

Good post, good point - got me thinking, as an ex-Infantry officer, that you may be - sarc aside - sort of right.

Think about it. China is not a friend to Islam (except when they are fucking with us) and the Islam-style jihadists giving them some problems in Western China currently. It is not beyond possibility that the growing problems to China from this (along with the other problems they are having) just *might* result in some joint training, starting with officer/nco specialized anti-Islam type training, and moving on to limited joint forces training.

This sounds really, really out there nuts, right now. Probably is - god knows I've been wrong plenty on this screwed up market lately.

But when our (foreign) anti-terrorist interests and China's intersect on the Islam jihadist 'problem' - well, hatred/fear of a common enemy can overcome a shitpot load of mutual distrust and enemity to yield a limited amount of cooperation.


You read it on ZH first... ;-)

Cash_is_Trash's picture


Your right.

There's more than debt to destroy the union. The 'melting pot' has clearly fucked up this nation. It's the fragmentation you speak of that allows politicians to pull at people's heartstrings for a 'fairer' or 'more just' union by fucing over those of us who have saved.

Fascism, it's in town and it's in style.

MantiXX's picture

I remember seeing a documentary in mid 70's (I for the life of me cannot find it) that had a russian scientist laughing about the nukes war between USSR and USA.  He stated it wouldnt happen, since russia was just going to wait and the US would destroy itself from within.  He was laughing how we were allowing the low lifes to breed (he said a certain race which I wont repeat) and just suck the life out of the working peoples output.  We would collapse from 'them' being a burden on society and low and behold, just walk around and look at the HUGE fat lazy slobs, or gangs killing each other.

Go team!!

Jean's picture

I wonder how many sober grandchildren that Russian scientist has today.

buyingsterling's picture

I laughed at the end. Up til then it was just some really sad, sad stuff. Sad because there's some real truth there. This system will never force people to refrain from breeding when they can't pay their family's way. The system's interest is in maximum dependency, but that's about to become self-defeating for them. Short of constant dilution of the currency, there's no way to pay for all of the handouts. And yeah, they're handouts mostly - it's someone else's money at this point, even with SS and Medicare. Consider the thinking behind demanding those programs continue: people know they are paying for current retirees, and that future generations will have to pay for their benefits. They're agreeing to pony up, so long as someone else is held at gunpoint in the future (their kids, usually), when their turn comes for payout. "I'll be a slave so long as I get my chance to hold the whip." Collectivists love this kind of thinking, it insures their place in power.

So long as the state insures that every child is fed and clothed and housed (they do, so long as a man isn't in the picture) the irresponsible will continue to outbreed the responsible, period. It will take the prospect of starvation or having to appeal to charity (as opposed to entitlement) for things to change. Or, we could start cutting the nuts off men who 'father' children and abandon them. I know people hate the left-right bizness, but look at the control freak leftists: They say not having health insurance is an unfair burden to place on society. But men can use any woman they can find for their pleausure and saddle taxpayers with new welfare cases, year after year, no problem.

blunderdog's picture

I know people hate the left-right bizness, but look at the control freak leftists: They say not having health insurance is an unfair burden to place on society. But men can use any woman they can find for their pleausure and saddle taxpayers with new welfare cases, year after year, no problem.

You raise a decent point, but this only works if the control freak rightists prevent those women from aborting their impoverished and unwanted spawn.

What's funny is, I'd betcha that the most vociferous opponents of unlimited breeding of useless eaters would also tend to be the most adamant pro-life advocates.

Maybe seems kind of a little bit of blame to go 'round.

Personally, I'm for aborting everyone, but it's not because I'm a leftist or anything, it's just 'cause I hate fuckin' kids.

buyingsterling's picture

I only hate them when they're innocent and still in the womb. Once they get past that 9-month 'lump of tissue' phase they can sometimes be cute. Disclosure: I've never had an abortion, so I really have no business talking about it. Same with rape, and child abuse. And running an international bank.

zhandax's picture

I am for mandatory retroactive abortions prosecuted under the currency act of 1792.  Let's start with DC and wall street.  "We got plenty of street lamps".

FeralSerf's picture

Rats breed more when they're fed less.  H. Sapiens does the same.  Why do you think the birth rate in Italy is so much less than in the Congo?

Don't be a dumb fuck!

topcallingtroll's picture

I was wondering when the america haters would return.

We have outlived two centuries of europe expecting this crazy american experiment to collapse. I bet we last a bit longer.

tarsubil's picture

Don't you understand? We don't want to play the Game! It is stupid. You IVY league CIA drone flying US citizen murdering f***s can go f*** yourselves! The MIC which likes grinding rich American peasants and poor Afghani serfs for a couple hundred billion can also go f*** itself and die. The People want to be free and left the F*** alone!

topcallingtroll's picture

The MIC and empire is a perversion of the american experiment. I hope it disappears too.

We dont have to throw the baby out with the bathwater.

FeralSerf's picture

It's all controlled from the City of London.  Americans are just colonial possessions.

A Nanny Moose's picture

This is why we were originally founded as a republic, and not suppose to be one large homogeneous democracy.

Rhodin's picture

We had the NeoCon elite repugnicans try to hijack, co-opt and mislead the TeaParty with some sucess. 

Now we are seeing the globalist demoncrats trying to hijack, co-opt and misdirect the #Occupy movement. 

Eventually folks will figure out that both obstructors have the same high command. 

knukles's picture

And that at it's very most elemental analysis, the T''s and Occupyers represent the identical zeitgeist.
A deep, fundamental, tired dispair, anger, abandonment and disassociation with the percieved leadership.  A sense that nothing whatsoever is working anymore.

FeralSerf's picture

Eventually folks aren't going to figure out shit.  They never do.  They're not supposed to.

A Nanny Moose's picture

Somewhere in afghanistan one wedding party breathes a sigh of relief, while another trembles in fear.

Missing Soviet subs...pfft.

pupton's picture

Could it be "Anonymous", or is this way out of their league?

narnia's picture

NSA spying on the CIA

Sabibaby's picture

The parts for the drones are probably made in ChIndia and the "virus" is hardcoded into the hardware. That is why it "mysteriously" keeps coming back. 

Steaming_Wookie_Doo's picture

Woo! Another benefit of "outsourcing". And Keynesian too, since it's always reappearing/breaking, this is creating a 'stimulus' to fix it over and over again. Oops, I /sarc'd all over myself.

Nobody For President's picture

Props. This idea is so fucked up you are probably right. I hope *somebody* at Creech is tearing into the hardware on a Reaper and sucking out code on every chip on the board to look at line-by-line. I don't think this is Anonomous or any kid US hacker - possible, but doubtful. But stickin' the code in overseas where the chips are made makes MUCH more sense.