Feeds

Feds crack down harder on 'lasing'. Yep, aircraft laser zapping... Really

FBI extends $10,000 bounty scheme against aircraft laser attackers

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Vid The FBI has announced it is extending a trial campaign that offers a reward of up to $10,000 for information leading to the arrest of anyone indulging in "lasing" – the increasingly popular sport of zapping aircraft with lasers.

Back in February, the Bureau decided it had had enough of this "dangerous crime", which in 2013 resulted in 3,960 reported laser strikes against aircraft.

It explains: "When aimed at an aircraft, the powerful beam of light from a handheld laser can travel more than a mile and illuminate a cockpit, disorienting and temporarily blinding pilots.

"Those who have experienced such attacks have described them as the equivalent of a camera flash going off in a pitch black car at night. As of December 2013, the FAA had documented at least 35 incidents where pilots required medical attention after a laser strike."

The anti-anti-aircraft laser scheme launched in a dozen FBI field offices in areas of high lasing activity. "Since then, there has been a 19 per cent decrease in the number of reported incidents in the major metropolitan areas of those offices," the Feds report.

Accordingly, the campaign will now extend across the US. Federal air marshal George Johnson said: "We want to encourage people to come forward when they see someone committing this crime, which could have terrible consequences for pilots and their passengers."

To emphasise just how much hot water lasing can get you in, the FBI cites the case of the 26-year-old California man who back in March earned himself "14 years in prison for aiming a laser pointer at a police helicopter and a hospital emergency transport helicopter".

Sergio Rodriguez was convicted of targeting the choppers with "a high-powered green laser pointer". His girlfriend, 23-year-old Jennifer Coleman, was later sentenced to two years for her part in the crime. ®

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
Bladerunner sequel might actually be good. Harrison Ford is in it
Go ahead, you're all clear, kid... Sorry, wrong film
Euro Parliament VOTES to BREAK UP GOOGLE. Er, OK then
It CANNA do it, captain.They DON'T have the POWER!
Musicians sue UK.gov over 'zero pay' copyright fix
Everyone else in Europe compensates us - why can't you?
I'll be back (and forward): Hollywood's time travel tribulations
Quick, call the Time Cops to sort out this paradox!
Megaupload overlord Kim Dotcom: The US HAS RADICALISED ME!
Now my lawyers have bailed 'cos I'm 'OFFICIALLY' BROKE
Forget Hillary, HP's ex CARLY FIORINA 'wants to be next US Prez'
Former CEO has political ambitions again, according to Washington DC sources
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing and building an open ITOA architecture
Learn about a new IT data taxonomy defined by the four data sources of IT visibility: wire, machine, agent, and synthetic data sets.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
5 critical considerations for enterprise cloud backup
Key considerations when evaluating cloud backup solutions to ensure adequate protection security and availability of enterprise data.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.