US Confirms Iran Did Not Hack RQ-170 Stealth Drone

Monday, February 13, 2012

Dan Dieterle

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A congressional official has confirmed that Iran did not bring down the US Stealth drone with it’s “cyber warfare” skills.

The downing of the drone in fact was due to a malfunction, according to a Foxnews article:

We have looked at this eight ways to Sunday. I can tell you it was a U.S. technical problem. The information (data) was not lining up and it was not the result of Iranian interference or jamming.”

This confirms what we stated in December, that Iranian “Cyber Commandos” most likely did not bring down the drone.

Information from a 10 week CIA review seems to point to a malfunctioning data stream. Information from the faulty stream may have led the drone operator to land the UAV, though this has not been confirmed. Also, and more importantly, because of information gleaned from the stream, the UAV may have not correctly dumped classified data.

The RQ-170 is programmed to dump sensitive data in cases of malfunctions or crashes. Though the information is encrypted, and Iran most likely could not retrieve the data on their own, this could still be a major blow to the United State’s UAV program.

Meanwhile, Iran’s Press TV, claims the Foxnews article a victory:

The report supports Iran’s claims that the reconnaissance was cyberjacked by the army’s electronic warfare unit and eased to a safe landing while deep in Iranian territory on December 4.

Apparently the Iranian Press only read a couple paragraphs from the article. I find it odd that they didn’t include a link to the Foxnews article. Maybe Foxnews is filtered out by Iran’s online censorship program?

On December 12th, President Obama asked Tehran to return the drone. We have found out that Iranian craftsman are hard at work duplicating the drone. And though they will not return the original, they will return one that they have made directly to President Obama.

The will send him a pink one:

“The models began release this week, and the makers say they have already set aside a pink one for President Obama – who has asked for Iran to return the original US craft. 'He said he wanted it back, and we will send him one,' Reza Kioumarsi, the head of cultural production at the Ayeh Art group was quoted as saying on Iranian state radio.”

How nice of them…

Cross-posted from Cyber Arms

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