Primarily for general aviation discussion, but other aviation topics are also welcome.
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By VinceGod
#1844954
360Radar are a enthusiasts subscription service and only provide realtime access to their Virtual Radar display. I’m not sure you can review past flights and understand any stored historic data is only available to emergency services. Data is pushed to them, like it is to OGN so not a really security concern and they handle the data privacy like OGN. With the exception of Pilotaware I’m not sure the share their realtime data with anyone else.
By riverrock
#1844956
@Flyin'Dutch' what @VinceGod is something he raised on the Pilot Aware forum a few years ago and it was pointed out to him that the Pilot Aware team need a password, which is set on each device and would need to be provided to the team, before they could access the device directly (using a system such as SSH). ( http://forum.pilotaware.com/index.php/t ... l#msg18964 )

Use of a VPN is one of a number of normal ways that can be used to secure remote devices. It ensures that any communication between the central servers and the devices can be more carefully controlled and encrypted in transit. It also allows a central controller to keep rogue actors out (such as Vince ? :pirat: ) as the interfaces used don't need to be publicly accessible.

Any device which you connect to your home network clearly has access to your home network and has the potential to be compromised. Typically a device (say a cheap smart power socket) will connect to a central server. The central server will then communicate back to the device (and so on). If compromised, that command could be to, say, scan your local network and upload the contents of any open fileshares it finds. That is always a risk with anything you connect to your local network.

There is nothing fundamentally wrong with what the Pilot Aware team have made public knowledge. They may decide, quite rightly, that detailed public discussion of their security systems would in itself compromise that security.

I have no knowledge of Pilot Aware beyond anything made public. However I am responsible for managing multiple servers across multiple data centres in multiple countries in my non-aviation day job
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By VinceGod
#1844957
@riverrock, actually I discovered the ssh keys in January this year and they had been in the build for a long time. A ssh key allows the owner of the key to login without using a username or password.

Regarding the use of VPN, I do not know of any cheap smart socket or any IOT device that would use a VPN to secure a connection to a central server as this is very much an overkill and presents a security risk. The ZeroTeir vpn configuration allows direct inbound connections for the Pilotaware team to the raspberry pi running on the local network. This inbound connection allows open access to the services running on the device and command line access via ssh using the ssh key or password. Running a ssh password attack wouldn’t take long to defeat the password either.

With regard to referring to me as a rogue actor, I find that a personal insult and disrespectful. I have attended many ethical hacking courses so understand the boundaries. I have recently deployed always on vpn technology to 3000 laptops running in users homes so know the security risks / concerns, I also manage multiply servers across many sites and in the cloud in my non-aviation day job.
By riverrock
#1844958
Cub wrote:The regulatory question around CE marking is interesting and I would also like to try again to see if the PAW team are prepared to address a few more questions which have never been answered;

Clearly they answered the CE mark question.

1. Lots of discussion is ongoing about the tracking and sharing of individuals registrations and identities via networks into the public domain which then quickly gets used by some for vexatious purposes. Is the reception and sharing/rebroadcast of individual flight identity and position information by a Pilot Aware over what is claimed to offer national and now increasingly European coverage what people actually want in terms of privacy?

It is certainly no worse than Fight Aware, Flight Radar 24, ADSB Exchange, NATS... They all keep long term all of the details they record.
The data in discussion is public (that is - what you broadcast - ie - your aircraft hex code, your Mode-A squawk, your identifier, your position & height etc) so there is nothing stopping anyone from collecting it and making use of it, even for profit as can be evidenced. I suggest that doing this to help aviation be more aware of where we all are and so potentially improve safety is a more than legitimate purpose.

2. What consideration is given in the ATOM/GRID network to adopting and handling privacy tools to allow the disassociation of airframe electronic identity with registration as per the rollout in the US https://www.aopa.org/news-and-media/all ... -available

I suggest that it would make zero difference to ATOM/GRID what ICAO address you send out so long as it doesn't change during that flight and is unique during that flight. ATOM/GRID presumably has no reason to know the ownership of individual aircraft, so the FAA mandate would presumably make no difference to it. The fact that most small GA aircraft identifier / call sign is its registration, which is being sent out via ADS-B anyway, makes this mute.

3. Is the ATOM/GRID network compatible with the Flight Information Display (FID) specification that was subject to industry wide consultation by the CAA before Christmas and is due for publication as a standard this year? This allows for the first time in the U.K. (outside of the Barton/Goodwood/North Weald trials) the use of surveillance data by FISO/Air Ground operators in the provision of Flight Information in an affordable form.

This would be interesting - although a completely different discussion. Perhaps if this consultation was public others could comment, but as its presumably sensitive, not yet published or finalised - how could anything be compatible with a non-finalised specification? What other providers have said they are compatible?

4. How is the licence fee for the reception, decoding and rebroadcasting of FLARM data handled for each station? Is that the responsibility of the station operator or does PilotAware cover these costs centrally.

I understand that FLARM are on record as saying they are happy with ground receivers decoding their data and rebroadcasting (note OGN). Its air-air that they insist on a licence. A lot of FLARM's USP is their glider focused collision avoidance algorithms as well as the data. They stopped changing their encryption scheme some time ago apparently (and its apparently trivial to decrypt anyway).

5. Is the resultant comprehensive ‘air picture’ built by the ATOM/GRID network shared with any other commercial third party who is, in turn, redistributing or charging for that data ie. 360Radar, FR24 etc?

My understanding is that the stations send raw data to 360Radar, which use it to compute MLAT, before 360Radar send the MLAT data back to ATOM/GRID. There hasn't ever been a suggestion that the "air picture" is sent to third parties.

6. Who carries the liability for the content, quality, completeness and timeliness of the data rebroadcast at an individual airfield. Is this the responsibility of the station operator/airfield or of PilotAware?

Liability for what? They don't provide collision avoidance algorithms - just information. Pilots still carry the can for lookout (etc). This isn't a certified system, being used to position aircraft beside each other blind or guide an aircraft to land. It just provides additional information.

7. Surely I will have bought a CAP 1391 device or indeed operate my FLARM or transponder to give myself electronic conspicuity air/air around my airframe and to allow ground based services (ATC/FISO/A-G) to legitimately receive and use that data to provide me with a prescribed service. What benefit does the contribution of my emission to the ATOM/GRID network give me unless I subscribe to and purchase a PilotAware device? Indeed does the contribution of my private data to a ATOM/GRID network actually constitute a dis-benefit in privacy terms if I am not a PilotAware user?

It lets a PAW user know where you are, so they can avoid you. As far as I know, UAvionics haven't guaranteed or provided any information on transmission or reception range in any aircraft. If you have a transmission blanked out area, the ATOM/GRID provides multiple additional recievers that can detect you and inform the PAW user that you exist. Same if your signal is blanked by geography - the PAW user can get your information re-broadcast to them. The advantage to you is you are more likely going to be known about.

8. Can I opt out of sharing my flight identity to the ATOM/GRID network whilst still allowing the positional information from my airframe to be shared?

What do you mean by "identity"? You have to be able to be uniquely identified by the grid and by a PAW so that duplicates are removed. If you're talking about your call sign, it can be useful for other pilots to match the call sign on a screen with what they hear from you over the radio, so they know your intentions, so disrupting that would have negative safety benefits. Also see your points 1 and 2.


I think my comment about slinging mud and hoping something sticks still stands.
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By riverrock
#1844960
VinceGod wrote:Regarding the use of VPN, I do not know of any cheap smart socket or any IOT device that would use a VPN to secure a connection to a central server as this is very much an overkill and presents a security risk.

Here is a white paper on the subject https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/iot/introd ... t-devices/
AWS made secure tunnelling to remote devices available as a service a few years ago (so essentially a simple to manage VPN). However this has been available for some time before this in other guises, from lots of other companies (I just happen to have AWS certifications). Its not new, complicated or particularly difficult to manage. I have no idea how their VPN is configured. Presumably you don't either.
I don't know about a cheap smart plug, but its pretty much impossible to know how any devices you buy is operating without taking them apart (digitally). Traffic on all the gadgets will be encrypted, likely TCP on port 443 using SSL, starting with an outgoing request to a server, and for devices waiting for a response from a server (such as a smart plug, waiting for an "on" message) a connection will be long lived. Likely only the device and server will know what the connection contains - could be a web socket or a VPN connection or one of many other things.
VPN is pretty common on remote sensing devices, which is essentially what ATOM/GRID stations are.
And as I say - plenty of other attack vectors without using a VPN. VPN just removes a number of them.

VinceGod wrote:With regard to referring to me as a rogue actor, I find that a personal insult and disrespectful.

I did mean that as a joke - hence emoji - apologies.
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User avatar
By Cub
#1844971
@riverrock Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions so comprehensively.

May I just check a couple of points?

The testing regime to allow CE marking of PilotAware had been described but can you confirm that the product is CE marked? I checked my PilotAware Classic and didn’t notice any such marking?

You describe, in some detail, the movement and sharing of detected data around various networks but please would you confirm whether I can request PilotAware not to share my aircraft’s position and identity in the same way I can request this of FR24, PlaneFinder etc?

By identity, I am referring to the call sign or hex code of the aircraft which maybe linked to the owner or operator of that airframe.

The reason I ask for this facility, amongst others, is because I really wouldn’t want my performance or the performance of the equipment on my aircraft to be investigated and dissected in a public forum, by an equipment manufacturer, following a perceived safety event, in the way that the Turweston Airprox thread was initiated by PilotAware, under the pretence of celebrating the performance of A/G operator.
Last edited by Cub on Wed May 05, 2021 8:12 am, edited 1 time in total.
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By Straight Level
#1844974
Cub wrote:@riverrock Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions so comprehensively.

By identity, I am referring to the call sign or hex code of the aircraft which maybe linked to the owner or operator of that airframe.


The route cause of this issue is G-INFO.
Perhaps getting the CAA to make the G-INFO data private would be better use of your time rather than continually 'whining on about' (riverrock put it another way) the inconsequential detail of a system that could save your or others life.

Are you also asking the the AAIB also redact all aircraft registrations for past and future accident reports so that public forum dissection of an incident can't happen. Which in itself would prevent many of us discussing and learning from such incident.
Last edited by Straight Level on Wed May 05, 2021 7:38 am, edited 1 time in total.
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By johnm
#1844975
I'm rather out of date now, but many home networks feature elements of the "Internet of Things " such as smart TVs, Alexa, remote controlled heating and the like. If the home network has been secured with all that in mind I can't see why ATOM grid would add any significant risk...
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User avatar
By Cub
#1844978
Straight Level wrote:The route cause of this issue is G-INFO.
Perhaps getting the CAA to make the G-INFO data private would be better use of your time rather than continually 'whining on about' (riverrock put it another way) the inconsequential detail of a system that could save your or others life.


I suggest the ‘route cause’ is actually the sharing of my flight identity and position by third party commercial providers in a public domain. I am ‘whining on’ to try and get a straight answer as to whether PilotAware are prepared to suppress the sharing of this data upon request, in the same way that other tracking companies allow.

Straight Level wrote: Are you also asking the the AAIB also redact all aircraft registrations for past and future accident reports so that public forum dissection of an incident can't happen. Which in itself would prevent many of us discussing and learning from such incident.


Actually, I trust AAIB to conduct a thorough and comprehensive investigation behind closed doors and in accordance with EU 996 and then report just what is necessary to understand and learn from the circumstances of the event. I don’t expect any element of that investigation to be initiated or conducted by an equipment manufacturer on an internet chat forum!
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User avatar
By lobstaboy
#1844988
riverrock wrote:The data in discussion is public (that is - what you broadcast - ie - your aircraft hex code, your Mode-A squawk, your identifier, your position & height etc) so there is nothing stopping anyone from collecting it and making use of it, even for profit as can be evidenced. I suggest that doing this to help aviation be more aware of where we all are and so potentially improve safety is a more than legitimate purpose.

s.


The Wireless Telegraphy Act prohibits the reception of any transmissions not specifically intended for the receiver, without the recipient having a licence for that. The only things you can receive without a licence are signals from entertainment broadcasters and radio amateurs.
That means all the ground stations that merrily pluck adsb data out of the ether and provide it to the public in any way are contravening the Act.
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User avatar
By PaulSS
#1844991
@Cub:

You said:
My challenge, is about the use and distribution of surveillance data for non-operational purposes. FR24, PlaneFinder etc. allow me to request the suppression and sharing of my identity and position in their public fronting systems.


I tried to point out the the difficulty/impossibility of something that you think is so simple to do:
Sorry, Cub, but some of that is a bit naive. I agree with the theory but it doesn't work in practise. As has been reported previously, some of those companies just say 'no' when asked to remove your data. Others make it so difficult that most people wouldn't bother and then there is the veritable plethora of companies that you'd have to deal with in the first place. You'd be on a hiding to nothing if you think you'd get them all to stop broadcasting your information.


You persisted in your thinly-veiled dig at Pilot Aware, insisting it's so easy with other companies:
I suggest the ‘route cause’ is actually the sharing of my flight identity and position by third party commercial providers in a public domain. I am ‘whining on’ to try and get a straight answer as to whether PilotAware are prepared to suppress the sharing of this data upon request, in the same way that other tracking companies allow.


Pretty obviously you didn't bother to research the point I made about the difficulty or impossibility experienced by others on this very forum trying to do what you say is an easy thing to do. SO, for the hard of searching, let's see how you get on with some of the replies below. After that, please let us know how you get on with your requests to suppress the sharing of your data from the companies you have listed. Once you've actually achieved what you say is an easy thing to do with those companies I think your whining will be taken far more seriously. Good luck.

We have deployed a new online based blocking system.

To block your aircraft from all our public solutions:
1- You need to have a Business Subscription at RadarBox24.com: subscribe at https://www.radarbox24.com/subscribe
2- On RadarBox24.com menu "BUSINESS", click on "YOUR FLEET"
3- Add the aircraft you want to track/block on the "Manage Your Fleet" link on the bottom of the "FLEET" page.
4- Enter the registration for the aircraft and click on "SELECTIVE UNBLOCK - BLOCK ADS-B/MLAT". A per registration monthly block fee applies.
5- You will then be able to track your aircraft on the "FLEET" page and it will not be visible to other users.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if we can be of any further assistance.

Regards, Alex Johnson
AirNav RadarBox Support


Thank you for contacting FlightAware. You have two options regarding blocking your aircraft.

Option 1:
Obtain a service provided by FlightAware, FlightAware Global (Gold or Platinum tier), that allows you and an unlimited number of selected users to track the aircraft, while it remains blocked to the general public. There are many other features included with FlightAware Global and you can view them on the product overview video. When purchasing FlightAware Global online and verifying your aircraft, by sending a copy of your aircraft registration to our support team, your aircraft will be blocked immediately on FlightAware.

Option 2:
If you do not require access to the aircraft's movements nor want the additional benefits that FlightAware Global provides, you may contact the FAA to request your aircraft to be blocked. Despite the aircraft not being American registered, the appropriate route to block your aircraft is through the FAA's new program called Limiting Aircraft Data Displayed (LADD). The FAA has created a website for you to submit your request online for the aircraft to be blocked. Once the request is received, the aircraft will be blocked within 2 to 3 weeks on FlightAware and other flight tracking websites.
*Please note, that once blocked with LADD and without a FlightAware Global account you will no longer have access to view the aircraft's movements on FlightAware.
From ADSB EXchange.


Removal of Information or Aircraft Data

ADSBexchange.com, LLC (hereinafter referred to as “ADSBexchange.com”, “ADSBexchange”, or “the company”). does not remove information from our service platforms unless a subpoena or court order valid in our jurisdiction is received requiring us to do so. Should any aircraft data be legally required to be filtered from our system, ADSBexchange will inform it’s users which aircraft have been so restricted and why.

If you feel you have a bona-fide request for removal, feel free to contact us at legal@ADSBexchange.com. We’re open to hearing from you, but understand in almost all cases we do not remove information from the site.

Thank you for contacting Flightradar24.com.

Your Support reference is 409887.


Thank you for contacting us. Flightradar24 no longer offers “blocking” of individual aircraft. Given the proliferation of private aircraft and various flight tracking services that provide unfiltered access to flight tracking data, as well as pending regulatory action by both ICAO and the FAA regarding the use of randomly assigned 24-bit addresses, we no longer manage individual registrations for restriction.

Like some other flight tracking services, we do adhere to the FAA’s block list ( https://ladd.faa.gov/ ), which may provide options for restricting the display of your aircraft, but it will still remain fully visible on many flight trackers on the internet. Please refer to the FAA website for additional details and to request blocking, if such service would suit your needs. https://ladd.faa.gov/

I'm sorry we are unable to assist you directly at this time, but please feel welcome to contact us again should you have any future inquiries.


Best regards,
Margaret
Flightradar24 Support
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By johnm
#1844998
@lobstaboy
The Wireless Telegraphy Act
is as out of date as its name implies and in many cases the receiver is outside UK jurisdiction and the data re-broadcast across the global Internet.
By riverrock
#1845004
lobstaboy wrote:
The Wireless Telegraphy Act prohibits the reception of any transmissions not specifically intended for the receiver, without the recipient having a licence for that. The only things you can receive without a licence are signals from entertainment broadcasters and radio amateurs.

The wording is: https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2006/36/section/48
which neither he nor a person on whose behalf he is acting is an intended recipient,


Other aircraft are intended recipients. Stations are acting on their behalf, which makes this explicitly legal.
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By riverrock
#1845006
riverrock wrote:
lobstaboy wrote:
The Wireless Telegraphy Act prohibits the reception of any transmissions not specifically intended for the receiver, without the recipient having a licence for that. The only things you can receive without a licence are signals from entertainment broadcasters and radio amateurs.

The wording is: https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2006/36/section/48
which neither he nor a person on whose behalf he is acting is an intended recipient,


Other aircraft are intended recipients. Stations are acting on their behalf, which makes this explicitly legal.

Whether those companies who don't provide services to pilots are also legal or not would depend much more on a court deciding if these websites or their users are intended recipients. It's never been tested in court.
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