Flight Ban On Laptops 'sparked by IS threat'

Britain will join the US in placing new restrictions on inbound flights from the Middle East, a reflection on how just about anything with power can be turned into an explosive.

Last February, a Somali man boarded a Daallo Airlines flight in Mogadishu, Somalia’s capital. Twenty minutes after the flight took off, the unassuming laptop in his carry-on bag detonated, blowing a hole in the side of the plane. 

The bomber was killed, and two others were injured. But if the aircraft had reached cruising altitude, the bomb would have ignited the plane’s fuel tank and caused a second, potentially catastrophic blast.

The Daallo explosion was one of a handful of terrorist attacks that the Department of Homeland Security cited to help explain why it introduced new rules for some passengers flying to the US with electronics. Starting recently, travelers on US-bound flights from 10 airports in the Middle East and North Africa will be required to check all electronic items larger than a smartphone.

A senior US administration official told reporters that the indefinite electronics ban was a response to continuing threats against civil aviation, but wouldn’t elaborate on the specific nature or the timing of the threat. 

Adam Schiff, the ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee, said in a statement that the ban was “necessary and proportional to the threat,” and that terrorists continue to come up with “creative ways to try and outsmart detection methods.”

The ban could be focused on simply separating items like laptop-bombs from passengers who would need to access them in order to set them off.

Electronics Has Made Smuggling Bombs Easier

This aircraft cabin ban on large electronic devices was prompted by intelligence suggesting a terror threat to US-bound flights.

The so-called Islamic State group (IS) has been working on ways to smuggle explosives on to planes by hiding them in electronics. The tip-off was judged by the US to be "substantiated" and "credible".

Inbound flights on nine airlines operating out of 10 airports in eight countries are subject to the US Department of Homeland Security ban.

Phones and medical devices are not affected.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson hosted a two-day meeting of ministers and senior officials from 68 nations to discuss the threat from IS. The Washington talks is the first full meeting of the coalition since December 2014.

This will be a chance for the Trump administration to put its stamp on the global battle against the Islamic State group, and for the reticent secretary of state to put his stamp on a foreign policy issue that the president has identified as a priority. The State Department says the meeting aims to accelerate efforts to defeat IS in its remaining strongholds in the Iraqi city of Mosul and the Syrian city of Raqqa.

On the campaign trail Mr Trump claimed to have a secret plan to obliterate the group. But his Pentagon has largely stuck with Barack Obama's strategy of supporting local ground forces, albeit with increased US military participation as the assault on Raqqa nears. 

Coalition members will also discuss how to stabilise and govern the cities after the conflict; and they're looking to see if Washington remains committed to a longer term effort to secure the region.

Eric Swalwell, a Democratic member of the House Intelligence Committee, told ABC News there was "a new aviation threat".

"We know that our adversaries, terrorist groups in the United States and outside the United States, seek to bring down a US-bound airliner. That's one of their highest value targets. And we're doing everything we can right now to prevent that from happening."

BBC:            DefenseOne:   

Why Hasn't MH370 Been Found?:

Four Threats To Aviation Security – and Four Responses:

 

 

« Tomorrow's Smart Cities Will Be Data Driven
A Quick Tour Of Cybercrime’s Underground »

Directory of Suppliers

CSI Consulting Services

CSI Consulting Services

Get Advice From The Experts: * Training * Penetration Testing * Data Governance * GDPR Compliance. Connecting you to the best in the business.

IT Governance

IT Governance

IT Governance is a leading global provider of information security solutions. Download our free guide and find out how ISO 27001 can help protect your organisation's information.

Jooble

Jooble

Jooble is a job search aggregator operating in 71 countries worldwide. We simplify the job search process by displaying active job ads from major job boards and career sites across the internet.

MIRACL

MIRACL

MIRACL provides the world’s only single step Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) which can replace passwords on 100% of mobiles, desktops or even Smart TVs.

ZenGRC

ZenGRC

ZenGRC - the first, easy-to-use, enterprise-grade information security solution for compliance and risk management - offers businesses efficient control tracking, testing, and enforcement.

Clayden Law

Clayden Law

Clayden Law are experts in information technology, data privacy and cybersecurity law.

DigitalStakeout

DigitalStakeout

A simple and cost-effective solution to monitor, investigate and analyze data from the web, social media and cyber sources to identify threats and make better security decisions.

Practice Labs

Practice Labs

Practice Labs is an IT competency hub, where live-lab environments give access to real equipment for hands-on practice of essential cybersecurity skills.

Authentic8

Authentic8

Authentic8 transforms how organizations secure and control the use of the web with Silo, its patented cloud browser.

CYRIN

CYRIN

CYRIN® Cyber Range. Real Tools, Real Attacks, Real Scenarios. See why leading educational institutions and companies in the U.S. have begun to adopt the CYRIN® system.

iStorage

iStorage

iStorage is the leading global provider of PIN Activated, hardware encrypted, portable data storage solutions.

CSO

CSO

CSO serves enterprise security decision-makers and users with the critical information they need to stay ahead of evolving threats and defend against criminal cyberattacks.

Barracuda Networks

Barracuda Networks

Barracuda provides a range of solutions covering network security, data storage, protection and disaster recovery.

ManagedMethods

ManagedMethods

ManageMethods Cloud Access Monitor is the only Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB) that can be deployed in minutes, with no special training, and with no impact on users or networks.

Bundesdruckerei

Bundesdruckerei

Bundesdruckerei specializes in secure identity technologies and services for protecting sensitive data, communications and infrastructures.

Silverfort

Silverfort

Silverfort introduces the first security platform enabling adaptive authentication and identity theft prevention for sensitive user, device and resource throughout the entire organization.

SysTools

SysTools

SysTools provides a range of services including data recovery, digital forensics, and cloud backup solutions.

Paladin Cyber

Paladin Cyber

Paladin Cyber provides comprehensive cyber protection for small and medium businesses through differentiated insurance programs and easy-to-use technology.