South Korea to test grenade-launching drones

Back on terra firma, ransomware rampage sees elevated security threat levels and giveaways to SMBs


South Korea has this week announced two new weapons: grenade-launching drones for its military, and anti-ransomware software for businesses.

The nation's Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) has revealed that in 2022 South Korea will test grenade-launching drones that can be remotely controlled over a range of two kilometres, carrying gunpowder-filled 40mm shells. The operator uses optical and thermal imaging cameras and a laser range finder to shoot up to six consecutive shots, with two seconds between firing. A two-axis gimbal and a recoil absorber stabilize the equipment after firing.

A second drone – a small modular affair – weighs less than two kilograms and is intended for monitoring and reconnaissance. Operators can attach specialized kit – like optical and thermal imaging cameras, speakers, searchlight and laser rangefinders – depending on the purpose of the mission.

South Korea's also worried about cyber security, as the Ministry of Science and ICT raised the country’s cyber threat level assessment on Wednesday. The national spy agency raised the cyber threat for public institutions the day before.

The country-wide threat level was moved from the second-lowest of five tiers to the middle alert tier in response to increasing cyberattacks, including ransomware, targeting South Korea's COVID-19 relief funds. South Korea approved spending 34.9 trillion won (US$30.3B) on relief packages last month.

South Korea's Internet and Security Agency tallied reports of 78 ransomware attacks in the first half of 2021. By comparison, the agency noted 22 ransomware attacks for all of 2019, 39 in 2019 and 127 in 2020.

The government expects an increase in phishing attacks, and will expand monitoring of malware and other cyberthreats as well as response measures to the crimes.

On Thursday, the ICT Ministry announced extra support for small business – offering them data back-up, encryption and restoration systems. The government agency will also provide free anti-ransomware software to medical clinics as they continue to vaccinate the population.

The Ministry is also considering providing cyber security protection to the oil and self-driving vehicle industries. ®

Similar topics


Other stories you might like

  • Heart FM's borkfast show – a fine way to start your day

    Jamie and Amanda have a new co-presenter to contend with

    There can be few things worse than Microsoft Windows elbowing itself into a presenting partnership, as seen in this digital signage for the Heart breakfast show.

    For those unfamiliar with the station, Heart is a UK national broadcaster with Global as its parent. It currently consists of a dozen or so regional stations with a number of shows broadcast nationally. Including a perky breakfast show featuring former Live and Kicking presenter Jamie Theakston and Britain's Got Talent judge, Amanda Holden.

    Continue reading
  • Think your phone is snooping on you? Hold my beer, says basic physics

    Information wants to be free, and it's making its escape

    Opinion Forget the Singularity. That modern myth where AI learns to improve itself in an exponential feedback loop towards evil godhood ain't gonna happen. Spacetime itself sets hard limits on how fast information can be gathered and processed, no matter how clever you are.

    What we should expect in its place is the robot panopticon, a relatively dumb system with near-divine powers of perception. That's something the same laws of physics that prevent the Godbot practically guarantee. The latest foreshadowing of mankind's fate? The Ethernet cable.

    By itself, last week's story of a researcher picking up and decoding the unintended wireless emissions of an Ethernet cable is mildly interesting. It was the most labby of lab-based demos, with every possible tweak applied to maximise the chances of it working. It's not even as if it's a new discovery. The effect and its security implications have been known since the Second World War, when Bell Labs demonstrated to the US Army that a wired teleprinter encoder called SIGTOT was vulnerable. It could be monitored at a distance and the unencrypted messages extracted by the radio pulses it gave off in operation.

    Continue reading
  • What do you mean you gave the boss THAT version of the report? Oh, ****ing ****balls

    Say what you mean

    NSFW Who, Me? Ever written that angry email and accidentally hit send instead of delete? Take a trip back to the 1990s equivalent with a slightly NSFW Who, Me?

    Our story, from "Matt", flings us back the best part of 30 years to an era when mobile telephones were the preserve of the young, upwardly mobile professionals and fixed lines ruled the roost for more than just your senior relatives.

    Back then, Matt was working for a UK-based fixed-line telephone operator. He was dealing with a telephone exchange which served a relatively large town. "I ran a reasonably ordinary, read-only command to interrogate a specific setting," he told us.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021