Saturday, March 12, 2011

Are we to reliant on GPS/GNSS? Royal Academy of Engineering says we are.

I have blogged in the past about our reliance on GPS technology here Politicians replace Air Traffic Control RADAR with GPS and here Scientists, Politicians Take Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) Threat Seriously. Human Exposure to EM Fields, now the Royal Academy of Engineering in London has released a new report: Global Navigation Space Systems: reliance and vulnerabilities.

This report details how we have become to reliant on the global navigation satellite systems (GNSS), Global Positioning System (GPS) is currently the most widely used and best known example of GNSS.  GPS is used a for more things than just getting us from Point-A to Point-B with maps of dubious accuracy.  Telecommunication Network timing and the International Banking System are a couple of examples of 'hidden' uses of GPS. The timing aspect of GPS is used by the infrastructure systems more than the position aspect of the system.  The report covers other infrastructure uses, and how they might be attacked and exploited.

The report also says that there should be an independent backup to GPS.  It is interesting to note that the U.S. recently destroyed the LORAN system, with explosives no less, under the guise of saving money; it cost more to dismantle the system that it would have cost to keep it running.  The paranoid among us might think there is a conspiracy to get everyone relying on a technology then take it away to advance a yet unknown agenda.

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