What’s New: Russian defensive jamming and/or spoofing seems to have ramped up in early June near St. Petersburg and lapped over into the airspace of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania.
Why It’s Important:
- Aviation safety and air traffic control are degraded.
- It likely signals the Russians think they could be attacked by drones in St. Petersburg.
What to Know: Interfering with GPS and other GNSS signals is very easy. Either denying signals (jamming) or imitating them to provide hazardously misleading information (spoofing). Just one of the reasons a White House official called GPS “a single point of failure for America.”
Global Positioning System (GPS) interference in recent days has affected Estonia and the Baltic region, with commercial pilots often having to resort to alternate navigation systems, news agency Bloomberg reports.
It is likely defensive in nature – the interference affects territories near to the source of the activity, thought to be in the Leningrad region.
The Estonian Ministry of Defense told Bloomberg that: “Jamming GPS signals is one of the potential means the Russian Federation has to ensure the protection of important facilities within that country,” adding that this can affect GPS in adjacent territories, such as Estonia.