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How 'Mafia Wars' Could Have Infected The US Military's Drone Fleet

sjohnson
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Posted October 13, 2011 - By Stephen Johnson

HACKERS movieLast week, we learned that a computer virus has infected the cockpit computers of the American military’s Predator and Reaper drone planes, and pilots keystrokes were logged as they remotely flew missions over Afghanistan and other warzones. Today, we've learned the source of the virus, and its connection to facebook game Mafia Wars.

According to a source quoted by The Associated Press, the virus came from "malware that is routinely used to steal log-in and password data from people who gamble or play games like Mafia Wars online." So, it's not a direct connection to the game itself, but it's still a quirky and interesting little story that highlights the extremely creepy world of unmanned military death drones..

Judging from the story, it seems that the virus was installed on military computers inadvertently from a pilot's flash drive. It is likely that the captured keystrokes meant nothing to whoever had access to them through the malware. But imagine, for a moment, that it was targeted, and a nefarious criminal organization is able to take control of our nation's robotic air force! Who would save us? Batman, perhaps?

No, wait, what about a grizzled group of badass, veteran crop-duster pilots and steampunks from the 1920s? With big mustaches and bicycles with huge front wheels? (Hollywood, when you make this movie, please send me a check.)

All of the best people are following Stephen Johnson's twitter feed. Also, email me if you wanna.

How 'Mafia Wars' Could Have Infected The US Military's Drone Fleet
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