Woman Allegedly Hacked Flight School, Cleared Planes With Maintenance Issues To Fly

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Bill-Higdon

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12notes

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Not scary at all, actually.
An aircraft in for maintenance could not be checked out or flown, because if you read the article, what she deleted was:
The entire schedule and blocked out all the instructors and pilots for the next day
The aircraft information for all 12 planes including make, model, and tail number
Maintenance reminders
Squawks

She did not remove aircraft maintenance records, only the reminders and the current pilot reported problems - on planes which could not be booked, as they were no longer in the system and there was obviously a problem as all the instructors and pilots were blocked out for the day.
She did not make planes "airworthy" or clear planes to fly. The only way a plane could have left with a maintenance problem is if the person who discovered the planes were no longer in the system was stupid enough to add them back in without putting the maintenance reminders back, while also not checking if any squawks existed on those planes and leaving those fields blank.
 

Bill-Higdon

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Wanttaja

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I retired about four years ago. About six months after I left, I was asked to come in and support an effort for a short time.

When I'd left, I had an account on a server operated by a certain TLA. Turned out I needed some data from that account. It was still active; hadn't been cancelled.

Now, NOT quite the same as this, as the account couldn't be reached from the normal internet, and I had to physically access a computer on the system (which was behind all the Get Smart doors). But I still felt it was a bit sloppy....

Ron Wanttaja
 

N804RV

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Sounds to me like she hacked schedulemaster.com (or whatever web-based scheduling app they use). There are usually physical means of keeping pilots from checking out aircraft that are downed for maintenance, that have nothing to do with the online scheduling software.
 

12notes

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From the IT security it is very scary
The "hack" was that she had the management password for the scheduling system. It might even have been her own that wasn't removed from the system. That's not scary, that's everyday password laxity, happens at thousands of companies. It's not like flight schools can afford an IT department, you'd be lucky if training on the scheduling system is more than 5 minutes.

It's a non-story that the reporter pushed as if this could have caused a plane crash, when it really has the same amount of importance as a vindictive former player deleting the schedule of a local volleyball league. Inconvenient for the handful of people involved, but completely inconsequential to everyone else.
 

Pilot-34

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So now instead of a few hours inconvenience repairing the damage the entire area thanks that this flight school is a danger to themselves and to the area obviously that can’t be good to have your potential students scared that you may fall out of the sky onto their heads at any moment that seems like a much bigger problem than the one she created
 
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