Editor’s note: This is the first open press item we recall that discusses China’s use of GPS jamming against US forces. GPS jamming and spoofing are often classified as “electronic warfare” by US officials instead of “cyber warfare.” We don’t understand why that is since jamming and spoofing can neutralize end use devices, cut off IT pathways, and can introduce false data into a variety of systems. Detecting and deterring GPS jamming and spoofing could be quick wins for cyber warriors.
It is also interesting to note that, even if US forces were to jam GPS and China’s satellite navigation and timing system, BeiDou, the Chinese have a high power, difficult to disrupt terrestrial system, called Loran, they could still rely upon (Russia and Iran have Loran systems also). The US abandoned Loran in 2010 in favor of relying entirely on GPS – though there is a growing movement to establish an improved eLoran system. Until that happens the US will be at a competitive disadvantage relative to these nations which may not always have our best interests at heart.