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Computer virus hits US Air Force aircraft

In another confidence-inspiring episode from the originators of the acronym 'snafu' and the phrase 'broken arrow', US military news informs us that their Predator and Reaper drone fleet has been hit with a computer virus.

Nasty things, computer viruses, causing your PC to perform sluggishly, send details of your illicit pornography perusal to your email contacts list, or in this case, potentially rain down ultraviolent death upon the unsuspecting citizens living below. It's, clearly, worth shelling out for a decent viruschecker. Oops, perhaps 'shelling' is an unfortunate image to bring up.

Predator and Reaper drones are the charmingly-named remote-controlled aircraft the US Air Force uses in battlegrounds such as Afghanistan, with the virus – detected over two weeks ago – seeming to do little more than log the pilots' keystrokes as they engage in remotely-flown missions. The virus is proving difficult to remove:

"We keep wiping it off, and it keeps coming back," a source familiar with the network infection told Wired magazine. "We think it's benign. But we just don't know."
US Air Force bases worldwide have been advised to discontinue their use of the affected drones until further notice. Drones are a critical weapon of choice in US military operations. In Pakistan alone, around 30 drone strikes have been reported since elite US forces killed Al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden on May 2.
Read more at http://www.physorg.com/news/2011-10-virus-drone-fleet.html
Story credit (c) 2011 AFP


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