Translated by
2017/10/18 14:48:33

Global Positioning System - GPS NAVSTAR GPS NAVigation Satellites providing Time And Range GPS-spoofing

The navigation satellites providing measurement of time and distance; the global system of positioning) — the satellite system of navigation. Allows in any place of Earth (including subpolar areas), almost under any weather conditions and also in space near the planet to define location and speed of objects. A system is developed, implemented and is operated by the U.S. Department of Defense.


GPS was developed on the instructions of the Pentagon by engineers of base of the United States Air Force in Los Angeles. The first GPS satellite was launched in 1978. Till 2000 military intentionally worsened quality of acceptance of satellite signals for civilians as considered it, first of all, the military tool. Later the U.S. President Bill Clinton then the market of GPS began to develop quickly interfered with a situation.

A system is used not only in a set of automobile navigators and modern smartphones, but also the emergency services, the companies which are engaged in transportation of goods, financial institutions and others, many of which without existence of a global system of positioning become helpless.

The GPS system remains under control of military command of the USA therefore other countries aim to put the similar systems which will be able to make them independent into operation.

Russia was a pioneer in creation of a system of satellite navigation, having started its development still in the early eighties. Later GLONASS system was successfully put into operation.

Systems similar GPS develop the European Union and China. In the European Union – it is Galileo, in ChinaBaidu.

GPS monitoring — the technology applied to solving of tasks of transport logistics, to control of the actual routes of vehicles and mobile employees by means of the system of global positioning (GPS). Monitoring allows to trace the current coordinates, the direction and motion speed of transport or the mobile worker in real time. In some systems installation of additional sensors on opening of doors, inclusion/switching off of actuators of special equipment, fuel sensors, etc. is possible. Control of compliance of the actual route to planned allows to increase discipline of drivers, to stop use of office vehicles for personal reasons and fuel theft. By estimates of the Logistika magazine, only due to increase in discipline of drivers in the Russian conditions of the gsm system of monitoring pay off for several months.

The GPS receiver — the device for determination of geographical coordinates of the current location on the basis of data on time delays of arrival of the radio signals radiated by NAVSTAR group satellites. The maximum measuring accuracy is 3-5 meters. Accuracy of commercial GPS modules is from 150 meters (at old models at poor visibility of satellites) up to 3 meters (at new models on the open place). Besides, when using the WAAS/EGNOS/MSAS systems and local transmission systems of amendments accuracy can be increased to 1-2 meters in horizontal direction.

GPS-treker — the device of reception-transmission of data for gps of tracking and control of movements of an object to which it is attached. The tracker can be used to determination of location of people, animals, goods or transport and also other objects. The device writes the acquired information with regular intervals and can transfer them by means of radio - cellular or satellite communication in the form of the SMS or on the Internet. GIS OPTIMUM is used in a geographic information system. Synonyms, possible formulations — gps a locator, the GSM tracker or the GPRS tracker.

GPS bracelets

Main article: GPS bracelets

2020: The authorities of Brazil implemented technology of control of location of the population

At the end of March, 2020 the government of Brazil announced deployment of a system which uses a geolocation of users to limit spread of a coronavirus of COVID-19. Read more here.


Earlier unknown attack to GPS creates "ships ghosts"

In media information on the new, earlier unknown technology of GPS spoofing which is presumably tested by the government of the People's Republic of China began to appear. Already over a year vessels in the port of Shanghai and its neighborhoods become the victims of the new attack [1].

Unlike earlier known attacks to GPS when GPS signal receivers in a certain area displayed the location in a limited range of the fixed false coordinates, the new attack forces repeaters of several ships at the same time at once to show false coordinates. Together these coordinates form ring-shaped patterns which some experts already managed to christen "circles on fields".

According to MIT Technology Review, summer of 2018 the American Manukai cargoship followed down the river Huanp to the port of Shanghai. According to the international legislation, all commercial vessels (except for small) should be equipped with the automatic identification system (AIS). Each several seconds of the AIS broadcast the name, a rate, location and vessel speed and also display all these data for other courts nearby. Obtains data on location of the AIS from the GPS satellites.

The captain of Manukai saw on the AIS screen the vessel going on one with it to a rate with a speed of 8 nodes. Suddenly the vessel disappeared, and in a few minutes appeared again, but already in dock. Then the vessel disappeared and appeared in the passage, and then it appeared in dock and so several times again. To find out where after all there is a ship, the captain looked in the field-glass. As it appeared, all this time the vessel did not leave dock.

Finally the official report about the event came into the view of the Center of modern defense C4ADS in Washington. Experts studied the data of the AIS systems purchased at the startup registering data of the AIS worldwide and found out that the greatest intensity of the attacks fell on July day 2018. That day in addition to Manukai about 300 ships near Shanghai were the victims of spoofing also.

At data visualization, covering days and weeks, coordinates of courts formed big circles. Similar "patterns" brought specialists of C4ADS into bewilderment. Experts also established that mysterious circles formed not only the ships. Having analyzed the card of movements of the Shanghai cyclists using Strava fitness-application, researchers also saw circular patterns. So the attack affected all devices with support of GPS, not only the ships.

"An opportunity to forge coordinates at once of several ships so that they formed circles, is an extraordinary technology. It is similar to magic", – the head of radio navigational laboratory of the University of Texas at Austin Todd Humphreys noted.

According to Hamfris, notorious circles – hardly work of malefactors. Most likely, this testing of new technologies held by the Chinese government. "But I am sincerely puzzled with how it becomes", – Hamfris was recognized.

BeiDou outstripped GPS on number of satellites

In August, 2019 the Chinese BeiDou navigation satellite system overtook the competitor of GPS in the USA by the size that can have serious effects both for this industry, and for national security of the USA. Read more here.

The American army decided to implement new GPS which "cannot be muffled"

At the beginning of June, 2019 the U.S. Army announced that it is ready to implement the new Mounted Assured PNT Systems (MAPS) GPS system which is, allegedly, impregnable for radio-electronic influence. Read more here.


The new algorithm for protection against GPS spoofing is created

Specialists of the University of Texas in San Antonio (University of Texas at San Antonio, UTSA) developed the computer algorithm allowing to minimize effect of the attacks to power plants using GPS spoofing. The algorithm is designed to help experts in cyber security to detect and prevent more effectively cyber attacks in real time[2][3][4]].

According to researchers, malefactors can interfere with operation of the GPS device and spoil his "understanding" of time and location by sending counterfeit GPS signals. The electrical power systems in the USA use GPS for putting of time marks on indicators of the stations located through the whole country. These systems are vulnerable to the GPS spoofing capable to change real data on time and location. Malefactors can "clone" a GPS signal and display incorrect time or location, researchers explained.

It is as simple use a new algorithm on mobile devices and computers as the normal program. The algorithm is capable to distinguish counterfeit GPS signals and to reflect the attacks in real time. Specialists developed an algorithm first of all for protection of the American electrical power systems, but it can be used also on other devices.


Ship satellite communication systems are vulnerable to cyber attacks

The researcher of security Ken Munro from PEN Test Partners company published[5] the report on the security concerns detected during the research of the equipment installed by the ships[6].

Within Munro's research used widely known tools, such as Shodan search service. Using Shodan the specialist managed to detect a set of incorrectly set up ship equipment worldwide.

Among vulnerable devices there were, for example, satellite antennas installed in courts for providing the round-the-clock radio communication, Internet connection, GSM and other communications. Among such devices the Cobham Sailor 900 antenna for which exploit is in open access. Thus any hacker, having due level of training, can exploit vulnerability in the equipment.

However in many cases the exploit is not even required as the equipment uses credentials of the administrator by default – the login: admin and password: 1234. Such antennas are set not only on civil courts, but also by the ships of navy and also by helicopters and airplanes.

In addition, the researcher found out that wireless Globe satellite antennas and private KVH CommBox terminals are also incorrectly configured and available to connections on the Internet.

Both devices processed logins through the unprotected HTTP connection, however the CommBox tool on the login page displayed the name of the vessel and even had the special button, having clicked which it was possible to see the list of all active users and to get access to names of all crew of the vessel. Moreover, the malefactor can receive detailed data on private network, having just guided a mouse pointer at certain elements on the page of an input.

The first case of use of GPS spoofing in the real attacks is recorded

Problems with satellite navigation in the Black Sea can be caused by the testing of a new system of interception of GPS held by the Russian military. According to the New Scientist edition, application of a similar system can represent the new form of electronic war available both for the governments, and for cybercriminals[7].

On June 22, 2017 the Sea U.S. Administration (US Maritime Administration) provided at first sight not remarkable report. According to the document, the captain of the vessel going from Novorossiysk found out that his GPS navigator showed incorrect data. According to the navigator, the vessel was on 32 km from real location aside – in the airport Gelendzhik. Check of navigation equipment did not reveal any problems, and the captain contacted the nearest courts. Signals of an automatic identification system (AIS) also showed that they are in the airport Gelendzhik. The problem affected at least 20 courts.

Despite the lack of confirmation of an incident, experts consider that it is the first documented case of use of the spoofing attack to GPS. A potentiality of the similar attacks it was already announced earlier, however nobody saw them in case.

Until recently the greatest threat was posed by suppression of signals of GPS using noise. The similar attacks can cause many problems, however it is easy to detect them as at signal loss navigators right there notify on it using signaling. The spoofing attack is much more dangerous, in that case the counterfeit signal sent from the land forces the device to show incorrect coordinates, without causing at the same time any suspicions.

According to the expert from the University of Texas at Austin Todd Humphreys, problems with navigators can be connected with tests of new means by Russia for conducting electronic war. In particular, players in Pokemon Go faced failures in navigators – in the center of Moscow their applications behaved strange. The counterfeit signal coming allegedly from the Kremlin redirected all on 32 km in I will shift, in Vnukovo Airport. Violation of a signal could speak security reasons as many rockets, bombs and drones rely on data of GPS. However the case in the sea occurred far from the Kremlin, and hardly there is a speech about security.

An automatic identification system – the system in navigation serving for identification of courts, their dimensions, a rate and other data with the help of radio waves of range of VHF.

the Leading countries refuse GPS for benefit of a radar-location because of risk of the hacker attacks

The risk of the cyber attacks directed to the satellite systems of navigation of sea vessels forces the leading countries to return to history and to start creation of the standby systems developed on the basis of the radio technologies used at the time of World War II writes Reuters in August, 2017.

Now vessels use GPS (Global Positioning System is the system of global positioning) and other similar technologies which cornerstone sending and receiving satellite signals is. As experts believe, such systems are vulnerable to the hacker attacks.

About 90% of world trade are performed through shipping, and unlike airplanes, by the ships there is no standby navigation system and if their GPS ceases to work, vessels risk to run aground or to collide with other ships.

South Korea develops the alternative system using the land navigation technology known as eLoran (the successor of the Loran technology applied during World War II). In the future the USA is going to adopt experience. Great Britain and Russia also study a possibility of transition to the technologies using radio signals. In particular the Russian Federation considered the possibility of deployment of the version of eLoran under the name eChayka for safe navigation in the region of the Arctic, however the project is still suspended in connection with a lack of financing.

Start of eLoran is considered a reliable method of protection of national security. Creation of network of radio-transmitting stations or the upgrade which are already existing will require considerable investments, notes the agency.

According to specialists in the field of cyber security, the main problem of GPS-and GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite Systems) of systems consists in poor signals which are transmitted at the height about 20 thousand kilometers above the ground and can be suppressed by hackers using cheap and available "glushilok". On the other hand, it is more difficult to muffle signals of eLoran as on average they in 1.3 million times are stronger in comparison with signals of GPS.

In the last several years messages about failures in operation of navigation systems of courts repeatedly appeared. In an example, last year South Korea stated that hundreds of fishery vessels were forced to return to the port after signals of GPS were blocked by hackers from the DPRK[8].


To soldiers in China prohibited to use GPS services

To soldiers and officers of one of military bases of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (CPLA) command prohibited to use smartphones with GPS because of threat of leakages of the classified information[9].

On one of military bases of army of the People's Republic of China command vetoed use by the military personnel of smartphones with GPS services. The similar decision was made after one of military published on the personal page in the Chinese social network the route of the jogs recorded by the application of the smartphone. Jogs passed including across the territory of the closed military facility. An incident was widely publicized.

In July, 2015 the Central Council of War of the country made the decision on use prohibition in army of smartphones and other mobile devices, but in most cases the order was ignored. It was during the investigation revealed that more than 40% of the military personnel regularly upload publicly the photos made on different military complexes of the People's Republic of China. The high command of NOAK is concerned about current situation and see potential threat of national security in GPS services.

GPS system errors at the Kremlin

In the summer of 2016 fellow citizens - residents of Moscow paid attention to failures in work of GPS navigation near the Kremlin - some devices lost touch with satellites, defined location of the owner in the Moscow region - in Vnukovo.

Such behavior of a global system of positioning creates difficulties to drivers, clients of the taxi, runners, fans of the game Pokemon Go, causes a secret itch in bloggers and fans of secrets. Social networks assume - responsibility for "jokes" with GPS is born by the FSO, protection of the president intentionally suits noises near the Kremlin[10].

Failures of GPS navigation in the center of Moscow began summer of 2016. The first messages about malfunctions appeared on social networks. Owners of devices announced total attenuation of a signal, spoke - the navigator defines their location in several tens kilometers from real, is frequent in Vnukovo or Domodedovo. As a rule, GPS failed in the neighborhood of the Kremlin. Failures were fixed of several minutes till several o'clock in day. And since then the number of complaints to strange operation of navigators does not decrease. Participants of the Moscow marathon told on September 25, 2016 to the Meduza edition of failure of the GPS tracker.

With reference to a source in the company telecom, the Meduza edition reported - the first failures of GPS are recorded on June 22, 2016.

Track GPS, (2016)
Around the Kremlin the second time in a day does not work with gps, (2016)

The source of Jellyfish noted frequency of failures on average each ten days.

But happens that two days running teleports. And happens that such problems do not arise long — for example, in August there was a break. "Teleport" usually lasts two-three hours, is normal in the second half of day — in 15:00–16:00. Then everything is recovered. Most often failures arise within the Boulevard ring, but in separate days can come also on southwest sections of the Third Ring Road (from intersection with Varshavskoye Highway to Shmitovsky Drive). About 3% of users of cartographic services meet technical difficulties.

interlocutor of Jellyfish

Malfunctions arise also with GLONASS. Fail different devices, on the systems of navigation — GPS or GLONASS — too depends nothing.

The events give an inconvenience to fellow citizens: people make jogs in the center of Moscow and complain - because of failures lose results of the occupations.

Difficulties in work with clients are experienced by taxi drivers. In social networks they specify that in case of teleportation "from the Kremlin in Vnukovo", the system of billing of the taxi begins to consider trip cost on a long-distance rate that results in need to sort outs customer relations.

Carried girls from Taganka to Okhotny for 199 rubles yesterday. Near the Kremlin glyukanut GPS. The long-distance call began to drip. Both gadgets considered that we in Vnukovo (!).

one of taxi drivers wrote to Twitter

Grigory Bakunov, the director of distribution of technologies of "Yandex" tried to understand failures.

I took with myself several different GPS-and the GLONASS receivers, the analyzer of frequencies — and with this backpack of devices climbed on the segway. Results of a research belong only to one area — to the Kremlin, and only to this specific interval of time — from 9 to 12 in the morning.

Grigory Bakunov, director of distribution of technologies of "Yandex"

Testing showed that a source of radio waves – the special hardware and software system imitating operation of the satellite of navigation systems. He acts in the territory of the Kremlin. Substitution of the place which is made by the device is called spoofing. According to Bakunov, transfer in Vnukovo or Domodedovo is explained by the fact that the owner of the device when spoofing should set specific counterfeit coordinates which that will tell the navigator. They can be entered directly or to select from the list which is offered by the producer. For Russia only the centers of the large cities and the airports appear. Vnukovo – the airport first alphabetically near Moscow. The expert believes, the reason of use of a similar complex – security, first of all. In particular, desire to limit flights over the territory of the Kremlin of pilotless devices. Bakunov explains that UAVs work in the same range, as other civil devices and for this reason distortions affect also other user devices.

The programmer assumed that in the territory of the Kremlin there is a source of radio waves which using special hardware and software systems imitates operation of the satellite of navigation systems and sends signals at frequencies most of which often use household navigators. Having made measurements on the direction of a signal source (blue areas on the card) in different points around the Kremlin, Bakunov assumed where specifically there can be "glushilka" (on the card it is designated by a star).

Card of researches of Bakunov, (2016)

As reported the Vedomosti edition, the official, the acquaintance with a hardware complex of intelligence agencies, assumed - in the territory of the Kremlin a system for radio-electronic fight – "Dogrose-aero" or some analog, close to it, works. According to him, this system is developed with assistance of the Ministry of Defence and should be used by government institutions for protection of important objects. The Izvestia newspaper wrote in September that this complex is just capable not only to muffle a management signal, but also to crack the onboard systems of the enemy unmanned aerial vehicle. According to the edition, the Ministry of Defence already tests a product. The employee of intelligence agencies says that he also knows of Dogrose whether but it is set near the Kremlin, he does not know[11].

The blogger Ilya Varlamov assumed that it becomes for suppression of flights of drones with cameras over the Kremlin.

Directly behind the Petrovsky tower there is a helipad which Putin regularly uses. Modern household UAVs without GPS usually do not fly. Besides, when you will approach the Kremlin, will throw you in Domodedovo or Vnukovo. In the majority of modern drones there is prohibition on take-off near the airports, and it just will not fly up in this zone.

Ilya Varlamov, blogger

The information security specialists polled by the Meduza edition refused to comment on the events. One of them in a conversation with the correspondent of the edition said: "Who knows [in what case], will not tell you and who does not know — will pull the wool over the eyes. Also it is not necessary to bring up this question".


The Russian Federation suspended work of the American stations on signal transmission of GPS in the territory

Since June 1, 2014 Russia stops work of the American stations on signal transmission of GPS, the Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation Dmitry Rogozin (the message of ITAR-TASS) said in May, 2014. If negotiations with the USA on placement of GLONASS stations in the territory of the USA will not be completed, work of the GPS stations will be stopped finally, he emphasized. Rogozin reminded that the American side suspended the solution of a question of placement in the territory of the USA of stations of a system of differential correction and monitoring of GLONASS, at the same time in ten subjects of the Russian Federation of the station of signal transmission of GPS work.

"As we had no promotion on similar placement of GLONASS system in recent months, to time for permission of this question remains till May 31. Since June 1 we stop work of these stations in the territory of the Russian Federation", - Rogozin said.

The Deputy Prime Minister reported that the working group which consists of representatives of Roskosmos, Academy of Sciences and Ministry of Foreign Affairs is created. "We start negotiations", - Rogozin reported, having added that on everything three months are allotted.

"So until the end of summer of this year we hope that during these negotiations the solution which will allow to recover this cooperation on the terms of parity and proportionality will be found", - he told.

Rogozin emphasized that otherwise cooperation will be contracted. "If is not present, since September 1 work of these stations will be stopped finally", - he said.

In total in the territory of Russia 11 GPS stations work. They are located in the Kaluga and Sverdlovsk regions, Krasnoyarsk Krai, the Sakha Republic - Yakutia, Irkutsk, Magadan, the Southern Sakhalin, Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky.

In November the The New York Times newspaper with reference to unnamed sources in State Department and the White House reported that the American intelligence agencies and the Pentagon object to plans of State Department to issue to Roskosmos the permission for construction in the territory of the USA of several GLONASS stations.

CIA and the Ministry of Defence are afraid that in case of placement of stations "Russia Will Receive the Base in the American Territory That Will Allow to Increase the Accuracy of the Russian Guided Missiles". Besides, according to them, these stations can be used for conducting intelligence activities directly in the territory of the USA.

According to The New York Times, attempts of Russia to achieve placement of SDKM in the territory of the USA caused strong concern in the congress, especially in republicans. With their active participation, notes the edition, and the prohibitive measure was taken.

On June 1, 2014 Roskosmos together with the Federal Agency for Scientific Organizations took the measures excluding use of ground stations of GPS in Russia in the military and other purposes which are not provided by current agreements.

"According to order of the Government of the Russian Federation Roskosmos together with the Federal Agency for Scientific Organizations implements on June 1, 2014 the measures excluding use of information from the stations of a global seismographic network working on signals of the GPS system and located in the territory of the Russian Federation, for the purpose of, not provided by current agreements, including in the military purposes" — it is said on the website of Roskosmos.

According to experts, shutdown of the specified stations in Russia will not have an impact on operation of the navigation equipment, including consumer electronics — smartphones, tablets, navigators. According to the Rogozin, only the American military will suffer.

Great Britain refuses own coordinate system

The service of geodesy and cartography of Great Britain (OS) submitted for public discussion a question of failure from use of a national coordinate system, the model-based Airy 1830 developed in the 19th century. As emphasized in OS, Great Britain will not refuse a national grid of coordinates, but can bring it into accord with a three-dimensional coordinate system for positioning on Earth[12].

The majority of the countries for determination of coordinates use width (location concerning the equator) and longitude is a position in relation to a meridian which passes through Royal Greenwich observatory. However Earth is not the ideal sphere, and has the ellipsoid form. In OS as a basis use the ellipsoid of Airy 1830 developed by the British astronomer George Biddell Airy.

The majority of the modern cards linked to GPS coordinates uses an all-terrestrial ellipsoid of WGS84. Thanks to the broadest use of GPS, WGS84 model already actually became the international standard, in particular the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) recommends to use it.

Many modern British cards have two grids of coordinates: national blue on the basis of OS Airy 1830 and black – according to high-precision data of GPS and WGS84 model.

Great Britain decided not to refuse a national "blue grid" completely, and just to bring it into accord with "a black grid", i.e. to pass from Airy 1830 to WGS84. It will a little shift a blue grid, for example, for cards in scale 1:50000 shift will be 2 mm.


Types of the attacks to GPS

GPS receivers even more often become elements of the complex systems including the multifunction software, different communication channels and formats of data. The system factor allows to improve characteristics of the GPS equipment, however bears also risks of emergence of new vulnerabilities.

Classify new types of vulnerabilities of GPS and estimate the scale of the related threats researchers managed from Carnegie Mellon University and Coherent Navigation company. In the article "GPS Software Attacks" they paid attention that the GPS receivers often perceived as hardware devices are end-to-end computer systems in which, in addition to hardware, there is also a software. And the share their program components grows.

The modern GPS receiver is built in difficult computer complexes, and information circulating in them is capable to break, with malicious intent, its work. Authors considered and classified possible types of target destructive impacts on the computer GPS systems, having selected three main types of the attacks: the attacks at the level of data, attacks on the software of the GPS receiver, attacks on the GPS dependent systems.

Using rather simple hardware-software system collected from available in the market and not expensive elements, specialists carried out several new conceptual attacks on GPS devices. At the same time, in particular, the following acceptances were used:

  • falsification of ephemeridae — regularly updated data sets about the current orbital parameters of GPS satellites;
  • transfer of incorrect information on current date;
  • intended mistiming of time scales;
  • an attack on the system software of the device (invasion, increase in privileges in a system);
  • the disorienting signal distortion — the pseudorandom code (spoofing).

New methods of the attacks underwent practical approbation on serially released user GPS equipment of different classes (on receivers and their modules and also on signal sources). The attacks were made, mainly, through the accepting antenna using vulnerabilities in programs of signal analysis of GPS and also in OS. Each of seven studied devices was vulnerable at least to two types of the attacks.

"Till today only such types of the attacks to GPS as a stub of a signal and spoofing, i.e. the attacks directly to a signal, but not on the accepting devices were widely known — experts of eScan in Russia and the CIS countries comment. — Of course, also the attacks through vulnerabilities of the geographic information systems using data of GPS were studied, however it is impossible to call this type of attacks the attacks directly to GPS. You should not forget also about use of functionality of GPS in malware for implementation of the "geodirected' attacks. During such attacks the malware works is aimed — only in a certain region or the area".
"This research considers GPS infrastructure as the complex computer system including the various software and communication networks working under different protocols — experts of eScan add. — Such approach gives broader picture of a status of security, than the traditional relation to GPS as to exclusively hardware system".

Experts of eScan in Russia and the CIS countries asked to state the point of view of specialists in the field of GIS from the Neogeografiya group:

"During this research, first, an opportunity not only time, but also final removal from a system of the existing models of receivers by means of only manipulations with the transmitted data is almost shown. It is rather interesting output requiring deep judgment and emergency practical actions. Secondly, the special danger of new types of the attacks on the infrastructures of operational management constructed based on GPS systems — for example, on airfield is shown. It is possible to provide what effects withdrawal by the malefactor of the airplane making landing in difficult meteoconditions, only on read meters from a right course will turn back, for example. The Kompyyuterizirovannost of modern navigation satellite systems is their "Achilles' heel', and the worthy answer to new threats to us just it is necessary to find".

The Spanish scientists increased GPS navigation accuracy by 8.5 times

Scientists of the Madrid university of Carlos III developed at the end of 2012 technology of increase in accuracy of position fix of the car on the electronic navigation chart for 50-90%.

Now the accuracy of satellite navigation is about 17 meters, researchers told. They managed to lower an error to 2 meters.

For this purpose they equipped the vehicle with the accelerometer and a gyroscope and used data from these sensors in combination with data from the GPS receiver.

In addition to increase in positioning accuracy, the technology promotes navigation at time lack of a GPS signal that happens when driving in the large cities.

Scientists consider that their development will help to increase safety of cars with off-line control. Eventually they want to replace the sensors assembled onboard the experimental machine with sensors in the driver's smartphone.

Researchers intercepted the robot plane, having forged signals of GPS

The team of researchers from the University of Texas at Austin showed in the summer of 2012 an opportunity to send false signals of GPS to the unmanned aerial vehicle and thus to change its route. It was held demonstrations at the request of representatives of the ministry of internal security on a polygon White sands in piece of New Mexico.

At falsification (so-called spoofing) of signals the GPS receiver receives false data both on location, and on time. There are concerns that for the attacks of spoofing the majority of GPS devices, including military is vulnerable. These fears usililitsya when at the end of last year the military unmanned aerial vehicle of the USA was gone in Iran, and in a week appeared safe in hands of the Iranian military who said that they put the airplane using GPS spoofing. However, they did not produce the evidence.

The demonstration which is carried out to New Mexico became the first, undoubtedly proved technical capability of interception of the robot plane by means of GPS spoofing. Researchers managed the airplane which is at distance in kilometer from them. Next time they are going to show a possibility of taking under control of the airplane from a distance of 10 km.

2011: Low protection of GPS

According to researches, for 2011, information from the devices of geopositioning or personal GPS devices which are built in the smartphone can be intercepted with ease hackers who can precisely define then location of the device, issue it for other object or forge information on its physical location.

The researcher in the field of security Don Bailey at the SOURCE Boston conference opened data on a new stage of the research of shortcomings of security systems of the built-in devices and showed as it is possible to crack personal GPS trackers to define their location and to issue the user or the equipment for other object. The researcher emphasized that the threat is rather serious.

"Enough small knowledge of the hardware to reverse the device", - he reported. "Children are exposed to physical risk because these devices can be turned easily into weapon".

The key moment is that the low cost and fast filling of the market these built-in systems excludes the probability that they are completely safe in advance.

"Development of similar programs does not require special costs, and a serious problem that new developers and the new companies have no concept about security. It is an unsafe product by default" - Bailey emphasized.

According to him, security of the built-in systems – a question ambiguous since the end product contains many components, such as: work with base stations, a firmware of GPS, the software, software for SIM cards.

During the first attack of Bailey forced the device to send it the physical location using technology of interception of GPS coordinates and information from a local tower of cellular communication. "I can force these devices to bypass control of the producer and to provide me information, and nobody will even suspect that I intercepted information on location", - he reported. Right after it fixed the device, it can define a type of an object.

"I can calculate that it is the trailer, the mail van or the teenager is driving the family car, having observed a moving object a certain time frame. I can use road video cameras on Google maps. It can subject the owner of the GPS tracker or the delivery system of a load to the physical attack", - Bailey tells. - If it is the truck on route I-70, I can take the device and force it to send incorrect information on location on the server, and itself I can steal it meanwhile".

These devices can be protected by enciphering of connection between the device and the server.

"I can just check the channel and see all information which is transferred by clear text. It should not be so simply, but it turns out so".

One more moment for check - it is necessary to be convinced that the device which is in 3G of network does not interact with other 3G devices: it should be reported only with the server service provider. Bailey suggests to make segmentation of network space that can also help to make these devices safer.

2010: Plans of upgrade of GPS

In May, 2010 it was announced that the USA is going to spend $8 billion for upgrade of a global system of positioning (GPS) within the next 10 years. In the course of upgrade all 24 satellites of a system turning at the height about 20 km over the Earth's surface will be one by one replaced. It was going to execute replacement of the first satellite at the end of May. Twelve new satellites will be manufactured by one of divisions of the American company Boeing. Others 18 will be made by company Lockheed Martin, State of Colorado, USA. Six satellites will be in a reserve.

The updated system which should be available not only to the U.S. Armed Forces, but also normal users in the USA and other countries will be able to offer higher reliability, the improved qualities of acceptance and accuracy of determination of coordinates. According to development team of the updated system headed by the colonel David Goldstein, positioning accuracy will be increased to "distance of an outstretched arm" whereas the current system brings an error to 20 and more feet (7 and more meters). The updated system will also allow to receive by 3 times bigger quantity of satellite signals, than now. Besides, new satellites are equipped with the improved atomic clock which is capable to distinguish one billion seconds.

The first phase of upgrade was going to begin more than 3 years ago. Postponement happened in view of special requirements of the American military who wished that the upgraded GPS had a number of additional opportunities. They, for example, wanted to make so that there was a possibility of a remote software update of satellites. Whether it is implemented in the updated system, it is not specified.

In 2011 the USA is going to put one more GPS IIF satellite to orbit. It will become the second in grouping from 12 satellites with which it is going to replace the outdated GPS spacecrafts. It is going to complete a series of starts by 2014 then upgrade should continue due to start of the satellites of the new GPS-III system developed by Lockheed Martin company. Now the orbital GPS grouping contains 31 satellites.

After upgrade the accuracy of determination of coordinates of GPS, according to messages of the western media, should improve from several meters to 60-90 cm. It should be noted that improved navigation accuracy as one of advantages of double-system GLONASS/GPS receivers and the equipment on their base is given by producers of these products.

For 2010 the accuracy of GPS systems and the Russian GLONASS are comparable. According to the representative of NIS GLONASS Igor Frumkin, now the positioning accuracy of GPS averages 6-7 meters, and GLONASS - about 10 meters. One of the reasons of it in the company call smaller number of the adjusting ground equipment of GLONASS in the world.[13]

The professional double-system equipment of a GLONASS/GPS is made and used several years in the different countries, including – because of the enhanced accuracy of determination of coordinates. At the same time and the cost of the double-system equipment is, as a rule, higher, than single-system. If GPS provides alone adequate accuracy, there can be a question of expediency of use of the Russian system of navigation.

Producers of navigation equipment consider that even with a pinpoint accuracy of only one GPS the need for GLONASS will remain including in foreign markets. So, according to Alexey Smyatskikh, the chief executive M2M Telematics, in addition to accuracy, important advantage of use at the same time of two systems of navigation is reliability.