Finalists in Air Force competition will hack a satellite in space | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #hacker

Moonlighter, the first hacking sandbox in space, reached the International Space Station on Tuesday morning. It should exit the space station in late June or early July for cybersecurity testing, giving good hackers the opportunity to perform tests and identify methods that could prevent other satellites from being hijacked.

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“When we say it’s a sandbox, Moonlighter is like a playground where we provide the space and the tools for professional hackers to perform cyber exercises and test out new technology,” Aaron Myrick, project leader for Aerospace Corp., said in a news release. “We hope this will lead to more cyber-resilient architectures for future space missions.”

Aerospace Corp. is a nonprofit that operates a federally funded research and development center. It developed Moonlighter with Space Systems Command and the Air Force Research Laboratory. The satellite will be used during Hack-A-Sat 4, the fourth annual satellite hacking challenge presented by the Air Force. This will be the first year finalists get to hack an actual satellite in space.

Moonlighter’s fully reprogrammable payload computer behaves like a flight computer, which allows cybersecurity experiments to be repeatable, realistic and secure. Moonlighter also has a firewall to protect the actual satellite from the hackers.

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