Spain flight delayed because of hacking of Apple’s AirDrop

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A flight that was about to depart to Rome was delayed for over 2 hours, as a hacker sent haunting images and death threats to a few of the passengers through Apple’s Airdrops messaging service. The incident took place on July 21st of this year when over 147 passengers, excluding the staff, were onboard of Vueling Flight.

The passengers were left terrified on seeing the disturbing images and text messages sent to them in Ethiopian Amharic. And when we translate the message, it gives us a hint that the person receiving the message will suffer for his/her deeds and will be left alone in this world for actions.

Airport authorities in coordination with the law enforcement are busy investigating the cyber-attack that apparently took place through the airport’s wi-fi network. Unidentified people familiar with the matter state that the messages could have been a part of a mischief made by youngsters at the airport. But if found guilty, they have to face serious consequences for creating fear among passengers, causing digital harm to them and delaying the flight services for well over two and half hours, causing a breach to the normal schedule of the airport staff and flight operations.

The sent photo was also interesting as it was a black-and-white photo of a creature with a skull and an image of a cross on a forehead and draped in a white body gown, resembling a ghost.

After 29 hours of investigation, Vueling discovered the messages were sent by an 18-year-old from Spain who was supposed to board the VY 1367 FCOALC, but couldn’t because of personal reasons.

He is now in police custody and could face a jail term or a hefty fine or under certain circumstances BOTH for causing harm to the society.

NOTE 1- In November 2021, a British student was arrested for making false bomb threats on EasyJet via social media. He was later arrested and released on a bail of £9k only to face other charges, leaving him in deep trouble in the future.

NOTE 2- AIRDROP is a service that allows Apple phone users to send messages to nearby devices of the same company. It is always a password protected.

 

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Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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