MH370: Remember my favorite conspiracy theories?

At least one of them —  which I tagged “hack & Done” — probably doesn’t sound as far-fetched today as they did a year ago. (The original post is reprised below)

Why?

Because sources have reported that:

Hacker controls plane

Here’s the scoop …

According to Wired magazine …

A security researcher” … took control of an airplane and caused it to briefly fly sideways, according to an application for a search warrant filed by an FBI agent. 

He allegedly hacked the in-flight entertainment system, or IFE, on an airplane and overwrote code on the plane’s Thrust Management Computer while aboard the flight. He was able to issue a climb command and make the plane briefly change course. 

More specifically, he allegedly obtained physical access to the networks through the Seat Electronic Box, or SEB.

These are installed two to a row, on each side of the aisle under passenger seats, on certain planes. After removing the cover to the SEB by “wiggling and Squeezing the box,” then attached a Cat6 ethernet cable, with a modified connector, to the box and to his laptop and used default IDs and passwords to gain access to the inflight entertainment system.

Once on that network, he was able to gain access to other systems on the planes.

Hmmm.

* * * * *

Here’s the original HomaFiles post from March 2014:

MH370: My favorite conspiracy theories ….

Below is an interesting infographic from Engineering and Technology Magazine listing the array of likely causes:

  • Catastrophic structural failure
  • Bad weather
  • Engine failure
  • Hijack
  • Terror attack
  • Pilot suicide

 

image

image

Guess what?

The list doesn’t include either of my 2 favorites ….

 

My favorites are the “D.B. Cooper” and “Hack & Drone” scenarios.

=====

D.B. Cooper

A friend (former Navy pilot) served this up to me.

First, some history.

In 1971, a dude — dubbed D.B. Cooper — hijacked a plane flying between Portland and Seattle.

He demanded (and got) a $220K ransom – a big deal in 1971.

He parachuted from the plan – with the dough – and was never captured.

The FBI says he didn’t survive the jump, but no ground evidence was ever found and the FBI case file is still open.

image

My friend’s theory: The pilot wanted to “disappear”  … so he knocked out the co-pilot, took the plane to 45,000 feet to disable the passengers, set the auto-pilot for the Indian Ocean route, took the plane down to 20,000 feet, then jumped out over Malaysia (after the plane made its u-turn.

Why I like the theory:

1) Haven’t heard it on the round-the-clock media reports

2) Reconciles the planes report movements – up, down and off across the ocean

3) Provides a reason the pilot would want the plane beneath a couple of miles of water – so folks wouldn’t know he’d bailed out.

I’m probably missing some parts of the logic, but you get the drift ….

=====

Hack & Drone

I’m personally most intrigued by the electronics angle.

One wild theory was floated early on that piqued my interest.

A tech dude speculated that this was a (terrorist) test of whether the 777s computer systems could be hacked and the plane essentially turned into a remote control drone.

I initially just chuckled at that but … when asked other tech experts didn’t categorically rule it out since the 777 is almost 100% computer controlled  … hack in, and maybe you can control the plane remotely.

Couple that with a reports that Russia downed one of our drones by “breaking the link with US operators with complex radio-electronic” technology”.

Hmmm …

If one were to test something like that — hacking & droning —  the hand-off between Malaysia and Viet Nam controllers  would be a nice hole in the system (that’s the exact timing of the turn west back over Malaysia) ,,.  and cruising over the radar-challenged Indian Ocean would be a nice venue for test-droning.

That, would explain why the plane flew around for 7 or 8 hours before tanking in the ocean (which is where I think it is).

Imagine the terror-impact if it gets revealed that the most sophisticated airplanes can be hacked and controlled by bad guys.

Would make the Target credit card fiasco look like child’s play.

=====

What’s your theory?

=====

Thanks to JC for serving up the DB Cooper scenario

#HomaFiles

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