Accidental Streaming of U.S. Drone Footage Shows Recreational Boats in Crosshairs

The federal government has certainly never claimed to be free of faults, but one embarrassing slip-up this week has some Americans furious.

Earlier in the week, a strange mistake led to live footage of a U.S. military drone’s camera being broadcast on the public internet for the entire world to see.  While that completely unacceptable mistake was disturbing enough to begin with, upon closer inspection, many were horrified to see exactly what this high tech weapon was using for target practice.

“The video appears to be recording thousands of feet above northwest Florida, over the coast, with the camera aimed at random civilian boaters.

“Experts have deduced that the footage came from Predator drones, which are primarily used by the Air Force and CIA to record an area right before a missile is dropped.

“The servers were discovered on Wednesday by The Daily Beast journalist Kenneth Lipp, who found them while randomly searching Shodan, a search engine for Internet-connected devices.

“Both servers were accessible just by typing their IP addresses inside the browser.

“The webpage then loaded with a ‘Welcome to FMV!’ title.

“It also included logos for three US government agencies: the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO), the Aerospace Data Facility-East, and the Washington Innovation Center of the Combat Information Center.

“The footage that appeared showed civilian boats and people on other water vehicles. “

As awkward as this brazen lack of security is for the military, it must have been even more distressing for the civilians who found themselves the target of highly sophisticated U.S. weaponry during a recreational time out on the water.  These sorts of incidents are continually reminding Americans of the frequent incompetence of our federal government, while also exposing a distressing practice being conducted by the powers that be.

After this egregious exposure, we can only hope that those responsible for the shoddy cyber security surrounding this technology shore up their defenses.  Otherwise, we may all be sunk.

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