Perhaps, one of the more interesting presentation at last week’s APEX TC Meeting in Los Angeles was the VT Miltope/RazorSecure discussion on IFEC Security. Why? Because airplane connectivity hacking is an issue we all are concerned about, especially if you travel. But more importantly, hacking an airplane is a very big deal! When we heard about the RazorSecure pitch, we contacted Jeff Drader, Director of Business Development at VT Miltope about the presentation, and after seeing it, we had a few questions for Jeff.

Everyone we talk to about aviation security is happy to address airport security, but issues pertaining to hackers in the plane (or on the ground affecting a plane) highlight the importance of the technical problems involved, the issues that can be discussed (security) and the eventual connectivity implications and solutions required.

Firstly, we asked Jeff about the TC itself and he noted: “The APEX Tech forum was this past week, and was good as usual. I’d say it has become more professional – with a broader scope. Not too long ago, the WAEA/APEX Tech committee was focused on the techie aspects of IFE, such as developing audio and video specifications related to the IFE industry. Now, it strikes a broader note, including how to provide/promote advertising to passengers …” When we asked about the technical focus of the VT Miltope/RazorSecure presentation, he told IFExpress: “RazorSecure is focused on embedded cybersecurity in the area of transportation, with initial deployments on trains. RazorSecure has been successfully detecting and diffusing on-board attacks and breaches as well as system installation issues.” He went on: “By year end, RazorSecure and VT Miltope plan to offer RazorSecure cybersecurity intrusion detection software as a part of VT Miltope’s nMAP2 airborne wireless access point.  In addition, VT Miltope’s next generation MAP3, with 802.11ac WAVE 2, will also incorporate RazorSecure cybersecurity software.  Since passengers now connect through these wireless access points to the cabin systems, this will be the first line of defense. The RazorSecure intrusion software, in conjunction with enhanced Cognitive Hotspot™ Technology software, provide formidable cybersecurity protection at a potentially vulnerable gateway to the cabin network. As Alex Cowan described this past week at the APEX Tech forum in Los Angeles, passive cyber detection, such as virus filters and firewalls, are no longer sufficient.  Active cybersecurity intrusion detection is necessary to keep ahead of quickly adapting attacks.  RazorSecure’s approach includes the detection of malicious software such as:

  • DOS Attack
  • Physical Attacks
  • Remote Shell Access
  • Critical Configuration Changes
  • Authentication and Misconfiguration
  • And, many more …”

We think you get the picture but, no doubt, IFEC security will get much bigger in the coming years and we cant wait to see who and when drives WPA3 to the aviation front. We also note, Alex Cowan mentions in his presentation that this year has seen increasing attacks against network equipment and you can bet that this is just the beginning!  Here are the RazorSecure presentation charts


Panasonic/AeroMobile

AeroMobile, a Panasonic Avionics Corporation subsidiary, and leading UAE telecommunications operator Etisalat have partnered to simplify and reduce the cost of mobile phone use inflightinflight. AeroMobile’s inflight mobile phone service is now available in Etisalat’s mainstream roaming packages, allowing their subscribers to stay online, make and receive calls, listen to voicemail on AeroMobile equipped aircraft at no extra cost. AeroMobile inflight mobile services are available on more than 20 airlines worldwide including Emirates and Etihad in the UAE. Kevin Rogers, CEO of AeroMobile, says: “Etisalat is renowned for being at the leading edge of the customer experience and this new market-leading offer shows their continued commitment to providing the very best service to their subscribers, whilst also endorsing the importance and relevance of in-flight mobile services to the traveling public.”


Airbus

Greece’s biggest airline, AEGEAN Airlines, has firmed up an order for the purchase of 30 A320neo Family aircraft at a ceremony in Athens, witnessed by Greek Prime Minister, Alexis Tsipras.  The purchase agreement, comprising 10 A321neos and 20 A320neos, was signed by AEGEAN Chairman Eftichios Vassilakis and Airbus Chief Executive Officer Tom Enders. It follows an earlier Memorandum of Understanding signed in March 2018. Currently, AEGEAN operates a fleet of 49 Airbus aircraft (37 A320s, 11 A321s and 1 A319).

The A320neo Family incorporates the very latest technologies including new generation engines and Sharklets, which together deliver at least 15 percent fuel savings at delivery and 20 percent by 2020. With nearly 6,100 orders received from 100 customers, the A320neo Family has captured some 60 percent share of the market. The A321 is the largest member of the A320 Family and seats between 185 and 240 passengers, depending on cabin configuration. Incorporating the latest engines, aerodynamic advances and cabin innovations, the A321neo can fly up to 4,000 nautical miles (7,400 kilometres) non-stop – further than any other single-aisle airliner.


Boeing

Bamboo Airways

Boeing and Bamboo Airways announced a commitment for 20 787-9 Dreamliners in deal that would be worth $5.6B at current list prices, when finalized. The announcement was made during a signing ceremony at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce office, witnessed by Voung Dinh Hue, deputy prime minister of Vietnam, and Nazak Nikakhtar, Assistant Secretary for Industry and Analysis, U.S. Department of Commerce, International Trade Administration.

As part of the agreement, Bamboo Airways completed the deposit requirement in mid-June to reserve the 20 airplanes, which are tentatively schedule to deliver from April 2020 through 2021.

“We are excited to introduce these new 787 Dreamliners into our fleet as we prepare to launch long-haul operations to international markets,” said Mr Trinh Van Quyet, Chairman of FLC Group, 100% owner of Bamboo Airways. “Our long-term vision is to connect Vietnam to key markets within Asia, Europe and North America and the capabilities of these new state-of-the-art Dreamliners will help us achieve our goals. The 787’s superior economics and efficiency, as well as the passenger pleasing interior of the Dreamliner will allow us to successfully grow our business while enabling us to better serve our customers.”

Bamboo Airways is a startup airline that plans to begin commercial operations in 2019 out of the capital city of Hanoi. The carrier plans to offer flights within Vietnam before expanding into other Northeast Asian markets such as China, Korea and Japan. “We are delighted to welcome Bamboo Airways to the Boeing family and we look forward to Bamboo joining the growing group of global airlines that fly the 787 Dreamliner,” said Mr Dinesh Keskar, senior vice president of Asia Pacific and India Sales, Boeing Commercial Airplanes. “We are confident that the 787 will help launch Bamboo’s long-haul operations and serve as the foundation of their success for many years to come.”

The 787 Dreamliner is an all-new, super-efficient family of commercial airplanes. Since 2011, more than 690 Dreamliners have been delivered to operators, flying over 255 million people on more than 680 unique routes around the world, saving an estimated 25 billion pounds of fuel.

At 20 feet (6 meters) longer than the 787-8, the 787-9 extends the family in capacity and range, flying more passengers and more cargo farther. The airplane can fly 290 passengers, in a typical two-class configuration, up to 7,635 nautical miles (14,140 km).

Bamboo Airways is wholly-owned by the FLC Group, a Vietnamese multi-industry company, focusing on aviation, real estate, resorts, farming, and golf.

Boeing & FedEx

In another story, BOEING and FedEx Express announced a new order for 12 767 Freighters and 12 777 Freighters as the world’s largest air cargo carrier continues to invest in the industry’s most capable freighters to better serve its customers. The new airplanes, valued at $6.6 billion at list prices, will appear on Boeing’s Orders and Deliveries webpage once contingencies have been met.This order comes as the air cargo industry continues to gather strength. A year after demand grew by nearly 10 percent, global air freight is on track to increase by another four to five percent in 2018.

Air cargo carriers are adding capacity to keep up with demand, either by converting passenger airplanes into freighters or ordering new production cargo jets. With the latest order from FedEx Express, Boeing has sold more than 50 widebody freighters so far in 2018. FedEx Express and Boeing have a long-standing partnership. The express carrier is a major operator of the Boeing 757 Freighter and the largest operator of the 767 Freighter and 777 Freighter. FedEx is also a customer of Boeing’s Global Services business.

The 767 Freighter, based on the 767-300ER (extended range) passenger jet, can carry approximately 58 tons (52.7 tonnes) of revenue cargo with intercontinental range, making it a flexible platform for serving long-haul, regional or feeder markets.

The 777 Freighter is the world’s longest range twin-engine freighter. The jet can fly 4,900 nautical miles (9,070 kilometers) with a payload of 112 tons (102 metric tonnes or 102,000 kg). With the 777 Freighter, FedEx has been able to connect Asia with its hub in Memphis, Tenn. non-stop and reduce transit times by up to three hours. This has enabled FedEx to accept packages later in the day and still deliver them on time. The 777 Freighter also uses 18 percent less fuel compared to the airplanes it replaces, and provides quieter takeoffs and landings that meet airport noise standards.

And yes, here is their hypersonic passenger design concept –

Boeing Unveils Hypersonic Airliner Concept | Commercial Aviation content from Aviation Week


Other News

  • Need a quick trip to the airport – cheap too? How to Find Cheap Transportation to and From Major Airports
  • Predictive Maintenance is coming of age – and EasyJet Airlines is one of the first users of some 50 predictive algorithms used on their A319’s. The following link is the Avionics story on the Rockwell Collins/Airbus/Plantir Tech solution:EasyJet Talks Evolving Predictive Maintenance Operations at AEE – Avionics
  • Tim Clark, Emirates CEO desires airplanes for passengers without cabin windows. He argues that such a plane would be 50% lighter – and we assume he doesn’t mean that there will be half of the passengers choosing the viewless travel. After all, at night or when the crew closes the shades, it is quite a similar experience!
  • Remember the actor – Michael Rapaport? He is now a hero! Michael Rapaport Stopped A Man Opening An Emergency Exit On A Plane
  • Bob Bogash sent this note about aviation pioneer Kelly Johnson: “As many of you know, Kelly is a personal hero, and I have written a lot about him.  I have also given quite a few talks about his life as an aircraft designer and project manager.  I’ve bragged I could probably teach a semester course on his life, and actually, it’s not much of an exaggeration. This is the 75th Anniversary of his founding of the Skunk Works, and there’s been quite a bit of press – some of it chest-pounding on the part of Lockheed.  Well, that’s understandable, I reckon, even though they were pretty glad to see him retired, at the time.” Check out these links on the subject: 1) http://www.rbogash.com/U-2/U-2.html 2) http://www.rbogash.com/kellyairplanes.html

Geneva, Swtizerland | May 29, 2018 –  Satcom Direct, the business aviation connectivity, hardware and software provider, is hosting ethical hackers performing ‘live’ hacks at SD booth W115 during EBACE 2018. The “white hat” hackers are demonstrating how Identity information capture, social engineering, phishing, password cracking, and system compromise occurs. The revealing presentations explain the potential impact of malicious intent, and how data network vulnerabilities are exploited. Using real-world scenarios, the digital security professionals from security testing company Shorebreak Security, outline practical solutions that can reduce potential dangers from the “black hat” threats.

Demonstrations of the SD Cyber Security Solutions portfolio, which combines the benefits of SD’s hardware routers, software services, ground infrastructure and technical expertise to protect business aviation data, complement the presentations. The portfolio also includes the SD Threat Monitoring Module, a feature supported by digital flight operations dashboard SD Pro®. The proprietary software provides customers with current and previous views of network security, highlights potential threats, and identifies incidents. With SD’s secure network infrastructure, SD customers also benefit from full data encryption from the air to the ground, while SD’s certified cyber security experts actively monitor data traffic to evaluate any risk.

The SD family of routers, added to SD connectivity and SD Pro software solutions, will then also provide detailed connectivity information, aircraft performance details, and cyber security data giving the customer real time flight management feedback to better support network and operational planning. When combined with the SD Private Network, the full suite enables IT departments to apply full corporate compliance protocols to their fleets, just as they would in their offices. Customers using the combination of SD hardware, SD software and the SD Private Network benefit from the SD guarantee of network security.

“As business aviation becomes more connected, aircraft become digital platforms for incoming and outgoing data transfer, and we want to provide our customers with the most innovative solutions to protect vital information.  Each system will have its own vulnerability, so the need to constantly monitor, and proactively prevent cyber-attacks is now imperative. We anticipate that our independent data security experts will drive home just how important it is to be aware of the threat of cyber security, and the need to implement the necessary hardware and software to better protect data,” says Michael Skou Christensen, VP SD International.

SD is also introducing delegates to CyberSAFEÔ, (Securing Assets For End-users) the industry’s first certified training course which teaches aviation professionals how to avoid cyber security failures.  Delivered in partnership with Logical Operations, the course educates users about technology related risks, compliance considerations, social engineering, and other data-security-related concepts.  Those new to cyber security in aviation can benefit from SD’s free Cyber Smart Kit. Available at the booth, the kit givesreal-world scenarios, quick tips, recommended actions and suggests protocols to implement specifically designed for aviation.

The Cyber Security demos take place twice a day at 11.00 and 16.00,and Thursday morning at 11.00. Individual demos are available on request throughout the show – SD Booth W115.

VT Miltope

One thing IFEC shows are really good for – surprises, especially in technology. Case in point, the recent APEX EXPO in Long Beach. The surprise was router security and the folks at VT Miltope certainly caught us unaware – they were well along in the developmental relationship with a cybersecurity expert (RazorSecure) and have a clear view of the issues with hacking and the potential types of attacks that routers might face on flights that provide inflight internet connectivity. While IFExpress has been following the deluge of attacks on the ground, we have been watching Wi-Fi capable planes for over a year now and it is a  fact that the folks who make routers for IFEC are too. In fact, cybersecurity is becoming a “big deal” for aviation. As proof of this conjecture, check out this Cybersat17 Conference coming in November – Cyber Sat Summit, but this year is just a beginning of a bigger focus on cabin data technology and cabin hacking security efforts.

Getting back to the APEX show, the IFExpress graphic rectangle is a portion of an actual page from VT Miltope’s “Cabin Wireless Network: The Next Frontier” presentation and it opened our eyes! The VT Miltope team has been on track with understanding and protecting IFEC wireless hacking issues and is in the process of working with a partner – RazorSecure Software who will assist in the development of more cabin hacking issues.

As a quick visit recap, we took the opportunity during the expo to receive an overview of VT Miltope’s planned MAP3, with the following key enhancements over the nMAP2, 802.11ac WAVE 2, Enhanced CHT, Embedded Server Storage (2 TB) (Optional), RazorSecure Software (Optional). We should also mention that we have a link for the preliminary data sheet for the MAP3 product with future product details which should be available this year. It should be noted that the proposed product will be a takeoff from the successful nMAP2 and by adding WAVE 2 (IEEE 802.11ac hardware and software for upgrading speed and data throughput), CHT (Enhanced Cognitive Hotspot Technology (Optimizing wireless cabin wireless data communication), optional  2 TB of Data Storage, and RazorSecure (Optional) advanced cyber security intrusion detection – protecting data communications). We won’t go into all the new features but from a technology point if view, this router is going to be a big deal! Add the security additions from RazorSecure, and this will be a formable product! It’s security developments will protect against DOS Attacks, Physical Attacks, Remote Shell Access, Critical Configuration Changes, Authentication and Misconfiguration Issues – and more than we can cover here. Here is a link to some of the Wi-Fi security issues facing connectivity –  US Warns Of Security Flaw Which Can Compromise Wi-Fi Connections (Update)  Here is our message: If you have wireless cabin data communication hacking concerns, you had better call VT Miltope! (We should mention the Galgus team as another contributor to the included technology of the VT Miltope product!)


Gogo

Gogo has made Fortune’s “Future 50” list of companies best positioned for strong future growth. Fortune worked together with the Boston Consulting Group to create the list. To identify the Future 50, Boston Consulting Group examined 2,300 publicly traded U.S. companies and reviewed 15 years of financial results through year-end 2016. They divided the companies into two different groups—those above $20 billion in market value at the time of the screening and those below.

“We are very proud to have been selected to the inaugural Future 50 list as it validates our leadership and innovation as the Inflight Internet company,” said Michael Small, Gogo’s president and CEO.  “We are connecting aircraft and leveraging that connectivity to develop cutting edge products and services that engage passengers and help our aviation partners run a safer and more efficient operation. Our latest technology innovations like 2Ku have us well positioned to fuel future growth.”

Gogo announced that it has been selected by LATAM Airlines Brazil to introduce inflight connectivity using Gogo’s 2Ku technology to 100 of its A320 aircraft, which operate flights in Brazil as well as to other countries in Latin America. Gogo’s inflight connectivity service will begin in the first half of 2018 and the roll-out of the technology is expected to be completed in the first half of 2019. “We have selected the most modern and innovative in-flight internet technology available in order to offer an unrivaled and diverse onboard experience to our passengers in Brazil.  The new service will complement LATAM Entertainment, our wireless entertainment system, and will provide our passengers with the freedom to choose how they want to enjoy their journeys,” said Jerome Cadier, CEO of LATAM Airlines Brazil.

Gogo’s 2Ku technology is installed on more than 350 aircraft today and delivers proven performance of more than 15 Mbps to each passenger device, covering more than 98 percent of all flight hours around the world with 98 percent system availability. With an open architecture that leverages current and future Ku satellites, 2Ku offers unrivaled adaptability to keep airlines connected now and in the future. The equipment installed on LATAM’s aircraft will include Gogo’s new, performance boosting modem. The proprietary features of the new modem significantly increase throughput and reliability to and from the aircraft.


BOEING

Boeing just signed a big deal with Singapore Airlines for 20 777-9s and 19 787-10s and 6 options of each…in the Oval Office. The deal is worth $13.8 B at list prices.

SIA, Boeing firm 777-9, 787-10 order at White House ceremony | Airframes content from ATWOnline

Also, it looks like the all Airbus Hong Kong Airlines is seeking to speed up growth to take on Cathay Pacific and will most likely get some Boeing 787’s. Last week, Reuters also predicted China Southern would buy 38 more Boeing planes worth $5.6 Billion at retail prices.

The company is investigating plans to double the B767 Everett production and apparently have an order which depends on a certain production rate of the planes. And, we understand that Boeing is looking at passenger version of the aircraft. The company has declined comment on the the airline but United Continental has been mentioned in the press. They have 51 B767’s that are quite old and some 77 B757’s that are around 20 years old.

On another front, There have also been rumors of a sale of 100 Boeing 767 freighters to Amazon’s growing Prime Air cargo fleet.


AIRBUS

The first A330neo took off August 19 at Blagnac in Toulouse, France at 09.57 hrs local time, for its maiden flight taking place over south-western France. The aircraft, MSN1795, is a A330-900 and the first of three certification flight-test aircraft to fly, powered by the latest technology Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 turbofans. The A330neo’s certification development program itself will last around 1,400 flight-test hours. This will comprise 1,100 flight hours for the A330-900 campaign – to achieve its respective EASA and FAA Type Certification around the middle of 2018; plus 300 flight hours for A330-800 version – which will be certified in 2019. Overall, the full A330neo Family flight-test campaign will be performed by three certification flight-test aircraft, plus the first production aircraft (the latter to validate the Airspace cabin prior to EIS).

Launched in July 2014, the latest generation of Airbus’ widebody family, the A330neo builds on the A330’s proven economics, versatility and reliability while reducing fuel consumption by a further 14 per cent per seat. The NEO’s two versions – the A330-800 and A330-900 – will accommodate 257 and 287 passengers respectively in a three-class seating layout, are powered by the latest-generation Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines, accommodate up to 10 more seats, offer new “Airspace” cabin amenities, and feature a new larger span wing with Sharklet wingtip devices.


SITA

The air transport industry has cybersecurity as a top priority with 95% of airlines and 96% of airports investing resources into major cybersecurity programs or pilots over the next three years. Yet research released  from global IT provider SITA shows there is still room for improvement with only one third of boards at airlines, and a fifth at airports, having fully integrated cybersecurity into their business plans.

Speaking today at a gathering of European air transport industry leaders, Barbara Dalibard, CEO of SITA, highlighted that while cybersecurity is the number one priority for almost all airlines and airports, it demands more attention and must be higher on industry board agendas.

Dalibard said: “Recent global cyber attacks demonstrate the risks and the need for a proactive approach. The air transport industry is highly connected and reliant on partners. We must work as a community to fight the global threat to cybersecurity. While we are pleased to see a 46% increase in the number of airlines prepared to deal with major cyber threats over the past year, there is still more to be done. The industry should move from dealing with common cyber threats to being prepared for major ones. As the technology provider owned by industry members, SITA is committed to invest in, and lead, the community effort to maximize cybersecurity. Together we can ramp up the industry’s defenses and ensure we remain one step ahead of any threat.”

SITA has conducted in depth research into the level of cybersecurity maturity at airlines and airports in the fight against this global threat. The results show that there are very high levels of security awareness among staff at airlines (82%) and airports (85%). This year, beyond cybersecurity protection, the industry is focusing on threat detection and response management. Already CIOs at 69% of airlines and 47% of airports are implementing security events and correlation monitoring, while security incident response management is being put in place at 77% of airlines and 60% airports.

Dalibard added: “Airlines and airports are building their critical defenses and preparing to deal with common threats but we must all bring it to the highest level and integrate cybersecurity at executive and board level. Together we must identify, detect and react to cyber threats and protect the industry’s assets from attack.”

Having identified the challenge, SITA earlier this year partnered with Airbus to address the air transport industry’s distinct concerns and created a unique CyberSecurity Aviation Security Operations Center (SOC). It acts like a cyber control tower with an integrated combination of processes, people and technology to detect, analyze, respond to, and report on cybersecurity incidents.

Markus Braendle, Head, Airbus Cybersecurity, said: “The air transport industry has unique cybersecurity challenges because of the varied and increasing use of smart end points across a largely distributed infrastructure. Digital transformation is enabling the air transport industry to deliver better services to its customers, but raising its threat exposure. Together SITA and Airbus CyberSecurity bring expertise and solutions to help airlines and airports monitor their digital assets to detect and respond to incidents.”

The SOC is part of a broader portfolio of SITA products and services that help airlines and airports identify threats and protect against, detect and respond to cyber attacks.

SITA also operates the Community Cyber Threat Center, a security information sharing service run on behalf of SITA’s more than 400 air transport industry members. It enables actionable information on cyber threats to be shared in a timely manner among key industry stakeholders.

These initiatives are part of SITA’s commitment to lead the air transport community fight against cyber threats and to improve the integration of cybersecurity into business plans at board level at airlines and airports.

SITA’s 2017 Air Transport IT Trends Insights are available here. Over the coming months, further insight into the results will be made available.


INMARSAT

Inmarsat is pleased to announce it has recently joined the Aviation Information Sharing and Analysis Center (A-ISAC), the trusted international membership association for sharing cybersecurity information targeted at the aviation sector. As part of the A-ISAC, Inmarsat joins a global contingent of aviation industry companies working collaboratively to develop and share timely and actionable information related to best practices, protective measures, threats and vulnerabilities. A-ISAC members are located on five continents and are leaders in the airline, airport, platform, satellite, and equipment manufacturing segments of the industry.


SECURITY

The US government is getting very concerned about the potential misidentification of bad devices in laptops and US passengers and planes might come under a security ban for the larger devices in the aircraft baggage holds…and in some cases, in the cabin. The US FAA is suggesting a worldwide ban on laptops in checked bags for obvious reasons. The issue in the checked bags is related to lithium-ion batteries and related potential issues with fire and explosions. There is also concern that nothing larger than an iPhone will be permitted in the cabin. If the cabin becomes out of bounds for laptops, you had better get a reliable source of small, secure data storage and a lot of carry-on print matter. Perhaps iPads that have more capability will become common, but we think they have a way to go to get laptop-like usage. We will see!

That laptop ban could be about to get a whole lot worse for plane passengers


MORE STUFF

  • In case you didn’t know, FTE Asia is Nov.7- 8, 2017 in Singapore and the folks at IFPL will be there as well. They told IFExpress: “We will be showcasing their latest USB-A and USB-C power solutions and how they are delivering seamless seat integration to truly enhance the ergonomics and aesthetics of the seat. Further, in line with passenger demand for consumer technology on-board, IFPL will be demonstrating their latest range of USB-A and USB-C outlets, AC power outlets, inductive charge and their traditional audio jackpassenger control units and seat back payment terminal solutions. We invite you to visit stand A33.”
  • Lastly, we have a freebie for you! While looking for a recap of the the Delta-CS100-Boeing-Airbus story, we came across Jason Cottrell’s excellent weekly airline publication (Airline Weekly) and his Fleet Sheet story on page 3 is a great summary. We asked for Jason’s permission to share it with you, so here it is:‎ airlineweekly.com/102317.pdf We also suggest you consider a subscription if you are airline data oriented. You can find out how by contacting him at jcottrell@airlineweekly.com – a really great airline publication.

United Kingdom | October 19, 2017–Inmarsat is pleased to announce it has recently joined the Aviation Information Sharing and Analysis Center (A-ISAC), the trusted international membership association for sharing cybersecurity information targeted at the aviation sector.

As part of the A-ISAC, Inmarsat joins a global contingent of aviation industry companies working collaboratively to develop and share timely and actionable information related to best practices, protective measures, threats and vulnerabilities. A-ISAC members are located on five continents and are leaders in theairline, airport, platform, satellite, and equipment manufacturing segments of the industry.

“Our decision to join the Aviation ISAC was driven by our desire to be proactive in protecting our systems from potential cyber-attacks,” said Joseph Teixeira, Inmarsat Vice President, Aviation Safety and Cybersecurity. “Companies can no longer operate as separate entities to keep pace with the constantly changing cybersecurity landscape. By being part of one association, we receive real-time updates and are networked across the global aviation ecosphere, expanding our security management capabilities exponentially. Inmarsat is proud to be part of the aviation association that is working to create a safer and more resilient global air space. ”

A-ISAC Executive Director, Jeff Troy highlighted the importance of Inmarsat’s membership in the association. “Protecting its products and networks is a top priority for Inmarsat. Cyber protection is a core component of the company’s security plans and by joining the association Inmarsat will play a key role in sharing best practices and helping the sector to innovate. We look forward to working with them as part of the A-ISAC community.”

Inmarsat is engaging with the A-ISAC at many levels, including organisational summits and workshops and participation in secure information exchanges with fellow members.

Euro Air Transport IT Summit, Hamburg | October 18, 2017–The air transport industry has cybersecurity as a top priority with 95% of airlines and 96% of airports investing resources into major cybersecurity programs or pilots over the next three years. Yet research released today from global IT provider SITA shows there is still room for improvement with only one third of boards at airlines, and a fifth at airports, having fully integrated cybersecurity into their business plans.

Speaking today at a gathering of European air transport industry leaders, Barbara Dalibard, CEO of SITA, highlighted that while cybersecurity is the number one priority for almost all airlines and airports, it demands more attention and must be higher on industry board agendas.

Dalibard said: “Recent global cyber attacks demonstrate the risks and the need for a proactive approach. The air transport industry is highly connected and reliant on partners. We must work as a community to fight the global threat to cybersecurity. While we are pleased to see a 46% increase in the number of airlines prepared to deal with major cyber threats over the past year, there is still more to be done. The industry should move from dealing with common cyber threats to being prepared for major ones. As the technology provider owned by industry members, SITA is committed to invest in, and lead, the community effort to maximize cybersecurity. Together we can ramp up the industry’s defenses and ensure we remain one step ahead of any threat.”

SITA has conducted in depth research into the level of cybersecurity maturity at airlines and airports in the fight against this global threat. The results show that there are very high levels of security awareness among staff at airlines (82%) and airports (85%). This year, beyond cybersecurity protection, the industry is focusing on threat detection and response management. Already CIOs at 69% of airlines and 47% of airports are implementing security events and correlation monitoring, while security incident response management is being put in place at 77% of airlines and 60% airports.

Dalibard added: “Airlines and airports are building their critical defenses and preparing to deal with common threats but we must all bring it to the highest level and integrate cybersecurity at executive and board level. Together we must identify, detect and react to cyber threats and protect the industry’s assets from attack.”

Having identified the challenge, SITA earlier this year partnered with Airbus to address the air transport industry’s distinct concerns and created a unique CyberSecurity Aviation Security Operations Center (SOC). It acts like a cyber control tower with an integrated combination of processes, people and technology to detect, analyze, respond to, and report on cybersecurity incidents.

Markus Braendle, Head, Airbus Cybersecurity, said: “The air transport industry has unique cybersecurity challenges because of the varied and increasing use of smart end points across a largely distributed infrastructure. Digital transformation is enabling the air transport industry to deliver better services to its customers, but raising its threat exposure. Together SITA and Airbus CyberSecurity bring expertise and solutions to help airlines and airports monitor their digital assets to detect and respond to incidents.”

The SOC is part of a broader portfolio of SITA products and services that help airlines and airports identify threats and protect against, detect and respond to cyber attacks.

SITA also operates the Community Cyber Threat Center, a security information sharing service run on behalf of SITA’s more than 400 air transport industry members. It enables actionable information on cyber threats to be shared in a timely manner among key industry stakeholders.

These initiatives are part of SITA’s commitment to lead the air transport community fight against cyber threats and to improve the integration of cybersecurity into business plans at board level at airlines and airports.

SITA’s 2017 Air Transport IT Trends Insights are available here. Over the coming months, further insight into the results will be made available.

  • €1 billion invested in digital in three years
  • Launch of high-tech Digital Factory, digital technologies competence centre
  • Cybersecurity lead for STATION F, the world’s largest start-up campus

France | June 14, 2017– In the last three years, Thales has invested over €1 billion in key digital technologies and today announces the launch of its high-tech Digital Factory to accelerate the digital transformation of Thales and its customers. Thales is committed to accelerating the digital transformation across all areas of advanced technology, enabling its customers to make the right decisions in real time. The Group has also signed a strategic cybersecurity partnership with Station F, the world’s largest startup campus, located in Paris.

Xavier Niel, Founder of STATION F:

“Cybersecurity is a key sector for startups today. We are very happy to welcome Thalès on campus to host a dedicated cybersecurity program, especially as they are one of the world’s leading experts in the field and have a strong dedication to the startup ecosystem.”

As you probably know, the Paris Air Show begins next week and there will be a few IFEC folks in the crowd. We have heard from Latitude Aero, Astronics, Thales, and Panasonic just to name a few. We shall see what IFEC news comes about but we thought that there are a number of other issues that deserve watching, and because it is an air show, we will start with a few notes on what to watch from Boeing and Airbus:

  • We anticipate Boeing will launch the Boeing 737-10 MAX at the show. While not the anticipated MoM plane, it carries up to 232 passengers and has a max range of 3,800 nautical miles (N M). We also expect to see the Boeing 737-9 (now under flight tests) there for viewing.
  • The big question is: Will Boeing Launch the New Middle Airplane, the Boeing 797 – and we think the answer is yes. Between the Boeing 737 MAX and the Boeing 787, the range and passenger requirements for the new middle aircraft market is coming alive in the near future and this plane will carry some 220 to 270 passengers and cover 4,800 – 5,000 nautical miles.
  • You should expect to see the Boeing 787-10 at this year’s show as it was introduced in the 2013 Paris Air Show. With 330 passengers in a two-class configuration, the aircraft will fly some 6,300 N M. And, yes, it is a twin-aisle aircraft.
  • While not announced as a product yet, expect to see more on the Airbus 350-2000. This aircraft is a potential competitor to the Boeing 777-9X. While Airbus has questioned the market for a bigger (400+ seat market), IFExpress doesn’t expect to see much more than a stretch with range reduction of the -1000.
  • The Airbus A330neo will probably not be at the Paris Airshow as the first flight has been moved to late summer.
  • The Airbus A320neo should be there and while it has been in service for some 18 months now, it does have some Pratt & Whitney engine issues. This airplane has 3,616 orders so we expect it to be front-and-center.
  • The A380 should make a showing, and while orders have slowed, the production line is only some 12 planes per year with a backlog of 107 aircraft.
  • While not expected in “person”, we anticipate plenty of information on the Chinese COMAC C919, which just had a first flight last month. It serves 158 passengers 4075 km in standard configuration and 5,555 in the extended version.
  • The Russian MC-21, which had its first flight this past month, probably will not be at Paris because of the huge testing requirements ahead, but you never know! (Editor’s Note: This would be a good place to note that COMAC (China) and UAC (Russia) have formed a joint venture to develop a new MoM aircraft (Shanghai assembly) for delivery in 2027 – 280 seats / 7,500 nm).

The aviation industry has other new developments that you may see at the show as well. New products/services based on market evolution and technological changes may bring some surprising technology to Paris. While aircraft order levels are down; production levels are up (1490 per year – 2017 est.), as order backlog hits some 14,000+ planes. But today’s flat market order changes will have some unknown impact. Further, with the “book-to-build-ratio” now below 1.0 (problem) and airlines are flying over 80% full (beneficial), who knows what will happen.

The aircraft market is expected to double in 15 years so manufacturing impact will be the other thing to watch at the air show – especially robotic production. Further, a lot of data (or Big Data) and related data changes will affect the airplane markets thus suppliers of data solutions, data services, data related hardware and big data experts will be there.

As digital transformations affect airlines and plane makers alike, a need to innovate for new aircraft and to improve performance may be a big deal – as we said, data applications will start to grow and thus data players are bound to be in Paris as well. For example, applications of “the cloud” and the challenge of securing them will no doubt bring a whole new set of aviation specialists, which will undoubtedly include Cybersecurity specialists as well. We expect to also see 3D printing and robotic manufacturing folks as the technology begins to invade the airplane (and airline) markets. With “big data” changes coming and with improved connectivity available, airplane maintenance and flight performance analysis will be a focal point, no doubt, and the solutions for using it will be there as well. Finally, Boeing, and possibly Airbus, (and independents) will be there for service analysis  (with aftermarket revenues) and especially since parts and humans increase costs. It ought to be a good and technology diversified show!

(Editor’s Note:”In fact, following the seven big mega trends will probably give you as good idea of what will be new at the show –  Remember CAMBRIC, which stands for Cloud Computing, Artificial Intelligence, Mobility, Big Data, Robotics, Internet of Things, Cybersecurity.” )


More News:

For a few years now, Boeing and Airbus like to duke it out over “rulings” and “subsidies”, as well as, some recent WTO announcements led to their two PR releases:

First from Airbus:
“ WTO condemns Boeing’s non-compliance and new subsidies
• WTO: U.S. failed to comply with rulings on massive illegal subsidies provided to Boeing
• Today’s WTO compliance panel report finds Boeing subsidies causing Airbus to lose hundreds of aircraft sales with an estimated value of US$ 15-20 billion
• Illegal subsidies to Boeing have, over time, resulted in over US$100 billion in total lost sales for Airbus
• Harm to Airbus will only increase if dispute is pushed out further, in case of likely U.S. appeal”

Next, from Boeing:
“Today, the EU and Airbus suffered yet another resounding defeat in this decade-long dispute. It is finally time for them to comply with their global trade obligations and eliminate and remedy the $22 billion of launch aid and other illegal subsidies that are harming U.S. aerospace companies and American workers,” said Boeing General Counsel J. Michael Luttig.”

You be the judge.

New offer to allow immediate detection and remedial action

Geneva | April 3, 2017–
Airbus and SITA have launched new Security Operations Center Services customized for the specific needs of the air transport industry. This new incident detection services will provide airlines, airports and other air transport industry stakeholders with information about unusual cyber activity that may impact their businesses.

These services have been developed to specifically meet an ever-increasing demand for cybersecurity in this industry, fast becoming one of its top priorities. Highlighting the importance of proactive cybersecurity, SITA’s Airline IT Trends Survey 2016 shows that 91% of airlines plan to invest in cybersecurity programs over the next three years.

By joining forces, SITA and Airbus can provide the most advanced cybersecurity solution for the air transport industry. Almost every airline and airport in the world is a customer of SITA and it delivers solutions for the world’s most extensive communications network. Airbus works with companies, critical national infrastructures, governments and defense organizations to detect, analyze and counter increasingly sophisticated cyberattacks.

Together they will use their expertize to detect cyber activity relevant to airlines and airports. When requested, the joint Security Operations Center Services will provide appropriate containment and remedial action ensuring that a company’s digital assets are safe from attack.

Barbara Dalibard, CEO of SITA, said: “As an industry we need to move faster in developing new cybersecurity solutions that mitigate the risk of ever-changing threats. This requires constant collaboration and innovation. With SITA and Airbus CyberSecurity uniquely placed at the heart of the air transport industry, we can facilitate innovation and information-sharing through services such as the Security Operations Center Service, providing solutions our customers demand and need.”

François Lavaste, Head of Airbus CyberSecurity, said: “Air transport is part of the Airbus DNA, so it was only natural that we joined forces with SITA to adapt our innovative cybersecurity solutions to this new service area, which is experiencing exponential growth. Our standard solution mainly combines real-time monitoring services for applications and communications dedicated to air transport and incident response services.”

The joint Airbus and SITA Security Operations Center Service is the first of a new portfolio of cybersecurity products and services being developed by SITA. The portfolio will help airlines and airports identify, detect and react to cyber threats while protecting their company assets from attack.

In addition to creating a customized portfolio for the industry, SITA in 2016 identified cybersecurity as one of five keys areas where it is exploring new solutions on behalf of its members as well as the wider air transport community.

Zodiac Inflight Innovations

Perhaps the biggest Zodiac (Zii) news we discussed was the announcement in June of the Zodiac selection by Airbus for high bandwidth connectivity and they note that Zii was chosen as a Buyer Furnished Equipment (BFE) for the Airbus High Bandwidth Connectivity (HBC) solution. Zodiac Inflight Innovations is supplying aircraft equipment, and other terminal hardware. As Lead supplier, Zodiac Inflight Innovations will manage the integration of the system and facilitate the Inmarsat Global Xpress service directly. The current scope of the HBC program covers the Ka-band system for A320 single aisle family, the A330 long range family and the A380 aircraft. Larry Girard, Executive Vice President at Zodiac Inflight Innovations states: “The end result will be that airlines will be able to have different HBC options on multiple aircraft types, while providing a consistent service to both passengers and the airlines day-to-day operations. As the Lead supplier, Zodiac Inflight Innovations’ role is bringing together all the components for the High Bandwidth Connectivity program, including our own, and matching them to the Airbus process.” Zodiac Inflight Innovations is providing an ARINC-791 compliant radome, adapter plate, skirt seal, antenna, as well as other terminal hardware. The radome and adapter plate have been designed to be sufficiently flexible to accommodate other Ka-band antennas, minimizing the work required for future HBC systems. This makes Zii the only IFE connectivity vendor across the current Airbus aircraft platforms – that’s a big deal! Twenty five airlines around the world with over 200 aircraft in service are already using Zii Inflight Entertainment which includes their RAVE Centric AVOD system and their latest RAVE Wireless streaming entertainment system (system diagram). Today, some 250 people work in Brea, CA (Zii’s home) and we expect to see more sale troops in the near future. Success at Airbus include line-fit on A350, A330, & A320 families. Further, we expect some events with Boeing soon. On the retrofit side, Zii told us that they have a ‘variety of suppliers’ to provide turn-key installations from hardware to certification, including long term support.
From a hardware perspective, Zii has a new supply of screens available that include 10.1”, 11.6”, 13.3”, and a stunning 18.5” screen. We note that the last three are 1080p devices! And yes, all are dockable units. We also note that they are not streaming to each seat – there is a 1.5 TB storage in the seatback electronics so content is downloaded prior to display and we note the quality is beautiful. As Harry Gray, VP Sales & Marketing, noted: “Storage in the STU cloud and at the seat delivers stunning and reliable inseat display images.” We agree.

SITA OnAir

SITA OnAir demonstrated how the passenger experience is being transformed by their e-Aircraft concept. They discussed the key developments based on the advent of the global high through-put satellite link, GX Aviation. In fact, they showed how the increased connectivity affected 6 key ‘audiences’ (aircraft included) for the improved data rates: 1) Passengers benefit from a richer, more interactive infotainment experience. At the Expo they launched their latest inflight portal for passengers, 2) Cabin Crew can now personalize passenger interaction with real-time information available at their fingertips. Also, they demonstrated their latest CrewTablet developments, 3) Cockpit Crew can also deliver a safer, more comfortable journey to passengers thanks to live weather updates sent directly to EFBs, 4) Flight Operations can enhance passenger safety by tracking aircraft wherever they are in the world using AIRCOM FlightTracker – and a number of airlines have already signed up, 5) Aircraft transmits maintenance requirement data, ensuring teams are waiting at the gate to keep turnaround time to a minimum, 6) And finally, Air Traffic Control enhances both safety and efficiency by streamlining communications between pilots and air traffic managers. SITA likes to call these ‘nose-to-tail’ solutions and they told IFExpress that there is an airline evaluating all these functions in real time today. One of the SITA OnAir prophets is Francois Rodriguez, Chief Strategy and Marketing Officer and he told IFExpress: “It is all real and being deployed and we are working with airlines to enable them all with nose-to-tail solutions.” If you are curious about the joining of the two companies and their resultant efforts, their website sheds a bit more information on their combined strategy: “On January 1 2015 , SITA and OnAir formed SITA OnAir as part of the SITA Group, to help airlines realize the full potential of the connected aircraft. The core of the new business organization is SITA’s proven knowledge of airline communications and IT, and OnAir’s expertise in supplying in-flight connectivity. By bringing  together  SITA’s and OnAir’s industry leadership and expertise;  in ground and inflight connectivity, cockpit data services and air traffic management solutions, aircraft communications and infrastructure solutions, as well as application development for both passengers and crew, SITA OnAir sets the benchmark for true nose-to-tail solutions. SITA OnAir provides the complete range of products and services an airline needs to realize the full potential of the connected aircraft regardless of fleet size, route structure or aircraft type.” And lastly, SITA OnAir demonstrated a passenger App that interacts with passengers during their entire flight, As an example, they use beacon technology to connect with the passenger on the ground and continues via a hand-off with them in the air. You can find out more about SITA OnAir here and check out their e-aircraft portfolio. Stay Tuned.

Jetpack

One of the more interesting small companies that we discovered last year at AIX, was Jetpack from England. They were at APEX this year and while we noted their independent programming collections, they abound in a lot of technology and gadgets that they have developed for airlines. While we don’t know how successful they have been, their Director of Technology, Ed Pleydell-Bouverie was one of the most interesting fellows at the show. He told IFExpress: “We have developed iBeacons, a Portable App Distributer that uses Raspberry Pi computer, augmented reality glasses, and a lot of ‘specialty devices’ for airlines. Perhaps his best comment that summed up their charter was, “We do oddball stuff.” Yes you do, Ed, yes you do!

BAE Systems

The anti-hacking surprise award at APEX goes to BAE Systems and if you have never talked to Dave Kingston about the subject – do so! We met Dave last year when we talked about their power supplies for inseat applications. As head of Business Development, he had our complete attention and for the first time, we heard a lot about anti hacking on commercial aircraft via the connectivity systems. We got the crypto discussions when they mentioned their content encrypted entertainment programming. The IntelliCabin devices can download encryption Apps that allow their DRM players to send out first encrypted entertainment without worry of copying or data intervention. It seems that they had to prove to the studios that the player Apps do not corrupt, omit, or scramble transmitted movie frames; as a result, some of the major Hollywood movie houses have approved their solution. This is a big deal. Dave told us that they have been working the issue for 18 months, and focusing on a solution for the last six. The reason BAE Systems can do what they do is buried in their $26 B military business that dwells in cybersecurity, military contracts and technology in general. They consulted on the security problem with movie content, accessed their practices and evaluated their network security. In fact, the tech folks there simulated attacks and looked across the whole air and ground IFE and content systems. Dave told us that currently IntelliCabin is not on a connected aircraft, but from a total security point of view, they will have to simulate more attack scenarios that include passenger attempts to load malware on devices that talk to the streaming source of content in the air and ground via their PEDs. This is big stuff and BAE Systems is a leader now in this technology. Obviously, this will make their products more marketable, especially in the near future when these critical and non-critical domains are attacked. Dave summed it up perfectly: “Our Wi-Fi is now the equal of an embedded system.” Their App software knows what device it is running on, it adjusts to that device, the user interface adapts to the device (This is a very nice function), and the system constantly adapts to the streaming content, including the adjustment of the device controls. As far as we know, no one else does this ‘cloud adaptation’ of content streaming. BAE Systems has come a long way and their focus on security will pay off, especially when the studios get a look at their solutions.


Involved with security in your company? You might want to read this.


If you are an engineer, or you like science and engineering, you must go see ‘The Martian’, you wont Be disappointed. Sir Ridley Scott is a genius.


Lastly, Ron Chapman noted recently that future inflight connectivity users might have a frequent ‘FFLYA’ in their future. Oh, look it up!