United Airlines has banned a passenger from flying with them after he tweeted that he could access the aircraft’s computer systems. Ironically, the man in question, Chris Roberts, is the founder of a cybersecurity firm called One World Labs and was on his way to San Francisco to give a presentation at a major security conference.
Mr. Roberts has recently been quite active in the media discussing the vulnerability of airline systems; he has appeared on Fox News and CNN and has also been questioned by the FBI after he made a similar remark on another United Airlines flight. Mr. Roberts was bemused by the airline’s actions as he views himself as someone who helps promote security rather than threaten it. His representatives, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, endorsed this point. EFF are in the process of trying to get Mr. Roberts’ electronic devices returned to him as they were confiscated by the FBI when they questioned him.
United Airlines has denied that there was any threat to airline security but said they refused Mr. Roberts permission to fly as his comments were in breach of airline policy.