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A drone that can steal data just by hovering above you


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55c8ae80c361885a138b458c-e1439920965584. ‘Aerial Assault’ Drone Helps Hackers Penetrate Internet Networks by hovering above

If you are a hacker and want to infiltrate Internet networks in areas out of reach, you can try this new drone. Aerial Assault drone is a unmanned aerial vehicle which is available for $2,500 and has the ability to hover about the target network, sniff vulnerabilities in the PCs below and report back to the owner.

The Aerial Assault drone houses a raspberry Pi running Kali Linux, a distro built specifically for pen testing of networks and devices. Once it is in the air, Aerial Assault can sniff insecure devices and networks and store that information locally or beam it back to the pilot.

David Jordan from Aerial Assault unveiled the aircraft at the Defcon hacking conference in Las Vegas Sunday. He says that Aerial Assault is equipped with a array of software tools capable of “penetration testing”

“There has never been this capability before,” Jordan told Agence Presse-France.

The Aerial Assault drone is built on top of open source technology making it easy for white hat hackers and security researchers to customise it the way they want. Because it uses GPS, in addition to hanging outside of skyscrapers collecting unencrypted data, it can also be sent out to multiple buildings in areas that would be inaccessible by a person.

This $2,500 drone should be on sale in the next few days at Wall of Sheep.

Me and a friend on Skype had a vision like this but it did some other stuff but its cool to see that this is coming to life by some one else we just didn't have the funding nor did we think this would be some thing people would honestly buy or at least I didn't think it be some thing people would buy or be able to afford $2,500 for a drone that could get lost just by a gust of wind ?

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$2500 seems a very high price for a drone, raspberry pi and bit of wifi kit.

Well at least you agree it's not some thing hard to make yourself you just need to get a drone that can handle the weight of a Pi on its back and your good to go but I had other idea's for a drone like this would've been nice to find some people to work with on a project like this though this is the reason I've always wanted to attend Defcon is to find people who could've possibly helped in the development of the project.

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If you want to work with people to do things like that then you are better talking to a local hacker space. While you could get something like this created at Defcon, the short time and potential lack of available resources definitely limits you. Going to parties and talks also takes your time.

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While the concept is cool I just don't see this sort of thing being very practical. I consider it to be about the same as me standing outside of the building with the Pineapple in my backpack (or even an RPi on a battery). Someone is going to notice it near the building and when they do they're going to either call security or the cops. If you are standing outside the building and they question you at least you can socially engineer your way inside or out of trouble. The drone can't do that and unless if you have a live video feed that you are constantly monitoring you may not know if it's about to be shot down by someone. I just really don't see these being put to use practically.

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The biggest problem with drones like this for this specific purpose is the time the thing can remain airborne. Until you get a drone that can stay near your target for (much) longer than 30 minutes and get back to you without being noticed I'd say that a drone is at best a delivery platform. It can move to a remote building, drop a box of goodies on the roof and travel back to you. You can then either aim a potent directional antenna at it or use a cell phone for network connectivity and take things from there. Maybe even pick it up later, or find a way to drop new batteries on the device or even a solar panel, but it's likely a big panel if your black box is to do anything useful.

I understand people thinking in this direction, but with the current state of technology it's still quite a ways off.

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The biggest problem with drones like this for this specific purpose is the time the thing can remain airborne. Until you get a drone that can stay near your target for (much) longer than 30 minutes and get back to you without being noticed I'd say that a drone is at best a delivery platform. It can move to a remote building, drop a box of goodies on the roof and travel back to you. You can then either aim a potent directional antenna at it or use a cell phone for network connectivity and take things from there. Maybe even pick it up later, or find a way to drop new batteries on the device or even a solar panel, but it's likely a big panel if your black box is to do anything useful.

I understand people thinking in this direction, but with the current state of technology it's still quite a ways off.

30 minutes! Longest flight I've ever seen without a battery swap is 15 minutes tops.

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I've wanted to do something similar, just the costs aren't in my price range at the moment to mess around and I'm still messing about with my covert Pi 2/Router Kali project. I was also thinking something similar with an RC car, or even stationary like a hollowed out lawn decoration or one of those hide-a-key rocks for a temp dead drop without being too conspicuous.

A local hacker space is a great place to start though as some of the guys at mine have been a wealth of knowledge on topics like drones and such that I have little to no info on.

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You could have some sort of swarm video processing, and program the drone to fly away if anybody actually sees it... Don't know how much other processing you could program the drone to do though. This way it is more automated to keep the drone out of danger, and you don't have to monitor it. I would like to make my own drone sometime, it just seems a little bit complex at the moment, and I can't shell out that much money for one all in one go.

Edited by overwraith
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Well, apparently it wouldn't work if you were moving, but if you were parked on a roof or something with landing gear down you could use what is called swarm pixel processing. Look it up, If a person is represented to a camera as a swarm of pixels, then you can program the drone to react to movement. It is a thing, and it is typically implemented in security cameras, and robotics. Just google it. Apparently if you see movement, it is larger than a certain dimension/closer to the drone than a certain amount of feet, then you have been seen. Another option would be an ultrasonic rotating distance sensor. Is composed of an ultrasonic sensor and a motor, proabably a servo motor.

It's not so much what is going through the other guys head, oh, i see that!, it's how do they react/are they reacting to the drone, for example by trying to catch the drone.

Edited by overwraith
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Even with swarm processing it won't be able to track their eye movements to know if it's been seen. If I had a drone flying above an establishment that was my target it would probably be because I don't want to be caught by the people below. So we could expect people to be around most of the time which would cause the swarm processing to constantly freak out and force the drone to fly back and forth without keeping a solid connection to the network or even gathering decent video of the surroundings.

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If you're on the roof however, and you park in the center (flat roof), then it cuts off some of your visual range. If it is a temple'd roof, then there would probably be problems. I am thinking that the size of the swarm, aka how close the person is to the drone would have to be taken into account. Bigger(visually) moving objects are generally closer to a drone than further away smaller moving objects. The algorithim you use would essentially need to not be too sensitive. Now actually flying and gathering this type of swarm processing data would be practically impossible due to the fact that everything would be moving since you are flying. You would have to turn on the algorithim while you were parked on the roof, and turn it off again when you fly.

I am actually thinking more in terms of park and observe instead of fly and gather.

Edited by overwraith
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There is a difference between working out if someone is moving near by and being seen. I can be sitting still at my desk and see something flying outside the window. Also, unless the cameras are full 360 then you'd have have blind spots as well.

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That's true, there would be blind spots. The camera isn't very well situated for this type of situation. My point however is that most people would try to catch the drone somehow instead of trying to shoot it down. I am banking on the fact that people generally don't bring guns to work.

I am also observing that people are reactive in nature. Trying to catch the drone is more or less equivalent to an event of the drone has been seen. Sure they can be far away and see it and just not care, but in that case you wouldn't need to move anyway.

One alternative would be to incorporate a level of swivel into the camera, but you're right, most drones wouldn't incorporate this. The algorithim would need to take into account the need to turn off the algorithim until the camera comes to a stop, and then turn it on again, and keep rotating the camera.

Also I just found something out, instead of using ultrasonic sensors or IR sensors, use instead sonar sensors. I am reading through an arduino book, but basically both arduinos and raspberry pi's have pins for hardware dev.

I wouldn't generally make the drone hover anywhere anyway, It uses a lot of energy, which would be better saved in a park and stare mode. Perhaps you could have it do some quick operations while en route to another stare location.

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What you really need is a glider, with an electric motor for boosts every now and then, that looks like a buzzard from below. Something like that circling a couple hundred feet up would hardly be noticed.

Interesting idea. You could also go for a blimp or similarly powered hot air/lighter than air balloon. Helium isn't that expensive and even though it leaks out of the balloon over time you could keep something afloat for quite some time with it. Use the drone motors for propulsion rather than lift and you should be able to reduce the overall weight of the thing considerably. It might not be as nimble or speedy, but it can be MUCH less noisy and, as I already mentioned, should stay in the air for quite a bit longer.

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A blimp? But those aren't sexy! I would probably just park a drone on the roof and have it return home when battery is low. Would probably try to roll my own, or follow a tutorial online if one existed. Don't have all that money to blow all at the same time. I suppose the trick would be all the hacking code that would need automated. You would need a dashboard or something to show you which procedures had completed, etc.

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The park and stare idea isn't too bad. You would need a good camera with a wide FOV and possibly head tracking abilities to land it safely from such a distance. You also probably wouldn't be able to fly on the normal 2.4 GHz freq unless the building is close by with almost no interference between you and it. Regardless it would still be nerve-racking to land in a small area with only a camera.

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