Barnaby Jack, the 35-year-old hacker who was found dead in July of this year was right. Medical devices can be hacked, and the government has known this for years. At the time of his death, the cause of which has still not been made public, Jack was head of Embedded Device Security at IOActive.
He was a day or so away from presenting his findings: ‘Implantable medical Devices: Hacking humans’ at the Black Hat Event in Las Vegas when he died.
Jack had discovered that medical devices such as insulin pumps and heart pacemakers could be hacked from a considerable distance, causing the pumps to dispense fatal doses of the drug and pacemakers to malfunction seriously enough to stop the wearer’s heart. The presentation was to explain to companies the vulnerabilities of such devices and how they could be improved to prevent tampering. (source)
According to an article on BBC, former vice-president Dick Cheney allowed doctors to disconnect the wireless feature of his heart pacemaker to foil possible assassination attempts.
“I know from the experience we had, and the necessity for adjusting my own device, that it was an accurate portrayal of what was possible,” said Mr Cheney, who was President George W Bush’s right-hand man during the “war on terror”. He was referring to a scenario on the TV program Homeland in an interview with CBS.
No cause has been given regarding the death of Barnaby Jack. Surprising for an apparently healthy 35 year old. I can find no comment from his family, or friends regarding his untimely demise, and the coroner’s office has thus far released no details of autopsy findings into the public domain.
Chris Carrington is a writer, researcher and lecturer with a background in science, technology and environmental studies. Chris is an editor for The Daily Sheeple, where this first appeared. Wake the flock up!
Image Source: Barnaby Jack – July 28, 2010 file photo (AP Photo/Isaac Brekken, File)