3D Printing and Cyberattacks

As the world becomes more aware of the damage that can be done by small groups of hackers, a particuraly potent opportunity of sabotage has emerged: 3D Printing. If hackers can gain entry to a device they could alter the programming in such a way that would be undetectable to the human eye, but cause massive damage to the products and endanger those around them. A small-scale example of the potential damages recently occurred.

The 3D-printed consumer drone hovers in mid-air, as pulsing percussion hints of doom. Then, less than two minutes into its first flight, which was captured on a YouTube video, the drone spins out of control and crashes.

The cause of the crash? The first successful attempt to hack into a computer and sabotage an additive manufacturing design, said researcher Mark Yampolskiy of the University of South Alabama, the coauthor, with researchers from Ben Gurion University and Singapore University of Technology and Design, of a paper on the hack.

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