N. Korea jammed S. Korea GPS devices: report

Mar 06, 2011
Missiles are displayed at the war museum in Seoul. North Korea's GPS interrupter is believed to be effective in preventing US and South Korean guided bombs and missiles from hitting their target accurately.

North Korea used jamming equipment to block South Korean military communication devices last week, a report said Sunday, amid high tension over the joint drills between Seoul and Washington.

Yonhap news agency said strong jamming signals sent across the border on Friday had caused minor disruptions to phones and navigational devices using GPS () at units near the capital Seoul.

The signals are believed to have been sent from the North's military facilities in Haeju and Kaesong close to the heavily-fortified border, it said, citing Seoul intelligence and military officials.

"The signals were sent intermittently every five to 10 minutes... we suspect the North was testing new GPS jamming devices imported from overseas," said an intelligence official quoted by Yonhap.

"We are preparing systems to control and overcome such jamming signals," it quoted another official as saying.

A defence ministry spokesman declined to comment.

South Korea's former defence chief Kim Tae-Young said last year a device the North had that was capable of disrupting guided weapons posed "a fresh security threat" to the South.

Kim said Pyongyang was thought to have been behind the intermittent failure of GPS receivers on naval and civilian craft along the west coast during the joint military exercise between the South and the US last August.

The North had modified Russian equipment to make its own jamming devices, he said, warning the communist country was capable of interfering with GPS reception over a distance of up to 100 kilometres (60 miles).

The North's GPS interrupter is believed to be effective in preventing US and South Korean guided bombs and missiles from hitting their target accurately.

Cross-border tension has escalated since last week when Seoul began the regular Key Resolve/Foal Eagle military drills with the US, which Pyongyang labelled as a rehearsal for invasion.

The communist country, which habitually criticises joint military manoeuvers between the two allies, threatened last week an "all-out war" and "physical counter-action" on the drills staged south of the border.

Inter-Korea ties have been icy since the North's alleged sinking of a Seoul warship that killed 46 sailors in March 2010 and the shelling of a border island that left four South Koreans dead in November.

Explore further: Austrian computer visionary Zemanek dies aged 94

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Hackers steal SKorean-US military secrets

Dec 18, 2009

(AP) -- South Korea's military said Friday it was investigating a hacking attack that netted secret defense plans with the United States and may have been carried out by North Korea.

Recommended for you

Hoverbike drone project for air transport takes off

7 hours ago

What happens when you cross a helicopter with a motorbike? The crew at Malloy Aeronautics has been focused on a viable answer and has launched a crowdfunding campaign to support its Hoverbike project, "The ...

Study shows role of media in sharing life events

8 hours ago

To share is human. And the means to share personal news—good and bad—have exploded over the last decade, particularly social media and texting. But until now, all research about what is known as "social sharing," or the ...

User comments : 3

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

freethinking
1 / 5 (2) Mar 06, 2011
Even if the military can overcome the GPS interference by NK, NK using this technology can have a significant economic impact for SK.
Nik_2213
not rated yet Mar 06, 2011
D'uh, when the hammer finally falls, SK will lead off with modified anti-radar missiles...
Besides, it will remind GPS users to keep an eyeball-Mk_1 on their paper map lest the electronics go down...
Hmm: Didn't the French do this to a NATO exercise a decade or so back ??
COCO
1 / 5 (1) Mar 08, 2011
pretty impressive use of technology by NK - sounds fishy - another way to paint these chaps as real villians - another distraction from failed economics and foreign policy failures of their masters