Mike Tassey and Richard Perkins plan to show the crowd of hackers a year’s worth of progress on their Wireless Aerial Surveillance Platform, or WASP, the second year Tassey and Perkins have displayed the 14-pound, six-foot-long, six-foot wingspan unmanned aerial vehicle. The WASP, built from a retired Army target drone converted from a gasoline engine to electric batteries, is equipped with an HD camera, a cigarette-pack-sized on-board Linux computer packed with network-hacking tools, including the BackTrack testing toolset and a custom-built 340 million word dictionary for brute-force guessing of passwords, and eleven antennae. On top of cracking Wi-Fi networks, the upgraded WASP now also performs a new trick: impersonating the GSM cell phone towers used by AT&T and T-Mobile to trick phones into connecting to the plane’s antenna rather than their carrier, allowing the drone to record conversations and text messages on 32 gigs of storage.
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