The world of espionage is full of twists and turns, plays and counter plays. In the latest twist, it was recently discovered that America’s most powerful surveillance tech gadgets, the Predator and Reaper UAVs – Unmanned Aerial Vehicles – have been infected by a keylogger virus. Discovered by the military’s Host-Based Security System the virus has made itself at home in the controller cockpits located at Creech Air Force Base at Indian Springs in Nevada. Most of the Afghanistan and Iraq are missions flown from Creech.
A defence official confirmed to CNN on Monday that the virus had infected the systems that control the drones but it hadn’t interfered with normal operations. Officials would not comment on the specific virus or how the virus had infected the systems.
The most likely source of infection seems to be the removable drives used to transfer data to and from the drones. The drones are in a sense debriefed upon their return, with all of the data collected during the mission unloaded to the removable drives. At some point the removable drives have been connected to the control systems, delivering it’s dangerous cargo. A persistent virus it is too, after each attempt at the cleaning process the virus seems to re-appear, even after 3 weeks the virus is still loitering away in the control system.