This gizmo lets you hunt, hack, and hijack drones for your personal army

Beating Amazon’s fleet of drones to the sky by several years, hacker Samy Kamkar just released SkyJack.

 

Patrick Howell O'Neill

IRL

Published Dec 4, 2013   Updated Jun 1, 2021, 12:38 am CDT

Beating Amazon’s fleet of drones to the sky by several years, hacker Samy Kamkar just released SkyJack, a drone built to find, hack, and take over other drones within Wi-Fi distance, “creating an army of zombie drones under your control.”

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With the ease of a longtime professor, Kamkar explained SkyJack in the awesome demonstration video above. 

Using a $370 Parrot AR.Drone carrying a $25 Raspberry Pi circuit board running the free Linux operation system, a $22 battery, a $7 wireless transmitter, and a $32 wireless card, Kamkar’s contraption automatically hunts for nearby drones. The Alfa AWUS036H wireless card allows SkyJack to search out other wireless networks—even encrypted networks—and then inject raw packets, which is exactly how Kamkar finds and co-opts his victims for the low, low price of $450.

Once the SkyJack finds a drone, the aircrack-ng software deauthenticates the drone’s owner and connects itself while pretending to be the original owner. The node-ar-drone software then pilots the zombie via Javascript. All of that software is free. Kamkar released the entire project on his blog and GitHub to use yourself or to customize and hunt an even wider range of drones.

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In fact, if you want to save $370 on the drone itself, SkyJack works perfectly when grounded. You don’t necessarily need your own drone to hijack other drones, though a fast flyer would definitely help expand your hunting grounds.

H/T Ars Technica | Photo via Parrot.com

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*First Published: Dec 4, 2013, 12:06 pm CST