tomlee
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Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 9:35 am

In light of Germanwings Flight 9525 clear exploitation of the existing door lockdown system have been proven to exist with catastrophic results.

Even before this event there was always criticism of what would happen if a malicious actor could somehow get behind the secure door. In those cases a united 93 type revolt would be impossible. The purpose of this thread is to discuss the technical implementation of a revision to the door to allow authorized access from the passenger side without allowing unauthorized access.

The problem:

How do you design the door lock so that you can open it from the passenger cabin side without allowing terrorists the ability to do the same.

Some background:
Airbus instructional video, https://youtu.be/ixEHV7c3VXs
Images of the door hardware, http://www.adamsriteaerospace.com/product_list.asp?cat=cockpit
(I really hope that thermal fuse is being used on many secured doors)

[Edited 2015-04-02 02:48:23]
 
tomlee
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 9:42 am

Proposed Solution:

Crew key pool where each crew member (pilots included) have a key device which stores a randomly generated code needed to unlock the door in an emergency. Only a few keys would be needed to unlock (flexible) and some should not be used when the override is being activated as they have poison keys which disable the unlock function.

This would all be managed in a stand alone way so that only the door control itself knows the codes and it re-generates them on every flight, relying on ground security to control who gets to have keys programmed pre-flight.

Counterpoint raised:

1) If the door can be unlocked then malicious actors will just crash immediately instead of spending any time before the door can be unlocked.

Yes, they could do that (automatic aerodynamic protections could delay that) but this is a lot better than allowing for any malicious actor to both choose and fly to any target of their desire with no means from the passenger cabin to break in.


2) A maliciously controlled flight deck could de-pressurize the plane incapacitating anyone from using the door unlock.

Planes have portable oxygen units so cabin crew can move around during a hypoxic event. Equalizing an already pressurized plane would take some time as even if the outflow valves where fully opened it would not happen instantly.

The amount of time the cabin crew would have is in the few minutes scale which is sufficient to use the unlock.


3) What about large crews how do you manage that system

You can control the number of keys you give out to have just have to have enough spatial distribution so all the keys are not in one place in normal operation.


4) Hacking, Spoofing, Copying

Hacking would be prevented by air-gapping the door controller and the constantly changing keys with strong cryptography would make cloning/spoofing/brute forcing difficult.



Implementation Proposal:

Using common off the shelf secure smart card microprocessors allows for the storage of temporary security codes which have no use after each flight. Devices would be programmed as part of the pre-flight crew process so would be distributed at the start of the flight with each crew member interacting with the door interface at this point they would be told by the system two states of their card (poison pill or normal). Transactions between the reader and the cards would be protected by encryption to prevent even the remote chance of a sniffer being installed or external RF listening.

Once crew members have their keys all they have to remember is that if they are the poison pill user or regular user this is assigned randomly with pilots not being assigned poison cards. The poison pill pool number would also be randomly controlled. In this manner a terrorist would not be able to figure out how many keys are needed to open the door or which
keys are good or bad. Crew members could lie and have plausible deniability as when the transaction fails they don't know who is lying amongst the group.

The final mechanism to protect the key pool would be an erase mechanism which would exploit existing anti-tamper systems of secure microprocessors to intentionally make the processor believe it is under attack and it would instantly zero its key material. This would allow crew members to covertly erase their devices if under attack.

[Edited 2015-04-02 03:15:28]
 
tommy1808
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 10:31 am

... just get rid of them. Aircraft have become a pretty hard target. 9/11 only worked because crew and passengers knew being complacent was the best way to go. Today pax and crew would beat anyone to death before they get even close to the door. It is not the environment where you can fight and win if you are vastly outnumbered. ...

Those doors did kill before, and they will kill again.

Best regards
Thomas
This Singature is a safe space......
 
tomlee
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 10:43 am

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 2):

The door should still be secure otherwise you encourage an attack to happen regardless of if the crew/cabin would subdue them. The deterrent factor isn't something to be ignored while not being able to open it is also a problem which this proposal is meant to fix.

If the secure door can be opened by cabin crew it is functionally the same as the pre-911 door minus the ability for terrorists to force it open. Couple that with the new awareness amongst passengers and crew and you make the overall system even safer.
 
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seahawk
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 11:00 am

It would mean if all keys are some how getting in the hands of the attackers they can enter the cockpit.

In general it should not be able to override a door opening request done with a valid code on the keypad. Only if something is wrong an override should be available.

This override option should be triggered by:

- Emergency buttons in the cabin (maybe portable for each FA)
- 2 widely separated buttons in the cockpit that need to be pressed simultaneously. Those should be placed that one person should be unable to operate them without tools.

If you add the 2 persons rule, I think this is safe enough. (Considering that any tool capable of pressing both buttons would probably cause questions during the security check for the crew.)
 
tommy1808
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 11:02 am

Quoting tomlee (Reply 3):
The door should still be secure otherwise you encourage an attack to happen regardless of if the crew/cabin would subdue them.

bs.... terrorists don't go for hard targets. Never did, never will. Aircraft are hard targets, derailing a train, blowing up a school bus... much, much easier to hit.
The net result of the safety/security trade off is negative.

It is much easier to infiltrate a terrorist into the cabin crew than into the cockpit crew. There were reason why the two- people in the cockpit rule wasn't adopted in some countries, it means that much more people will be in the cockpit on a regular basis, which also decreases security in turn for improving the one-crazy-guy risk.

Best regards
Thomas
This Singature is a safe space......
 
tomlee
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 11:12 am

Quoting seahawk (Reply 4):
It would mean if all keys are some how getting in the hands of the attackers they can enter the cockpit.

If they have all the cards the door won't unlock. That is the point of the poison pill pool doing this would actually lock out the door. Not to mention how exactly you would manage to do this before crew members erase their respective keys covertly is another problem on top of that.

Quoting seahawk (Reply 4):
In general it should not be able to override a door opening request done with a valid code on the keypad. Only if something is wrong an override should be available.

There is no need for a static pin number with the keys if people just want to request access they merely have to use the key on the door and ask for entry with the flight deck crew deciding to honour the single user request themselves.

A single key being used would operate under the old logic where they can lock out the access and tell the cabin crew something is up.

Quoting seahawk (Reply 4):
Emergency buttons in the cabin (maybe portable for each FA)

Portable implies wireless since the cockpit door controller has to be able to receive the panic singals without the user putting it into a fixed reader. This just opens an entire other can of worms especially since you need it to work across long distances which means people on the ground could trigger the lockout or even the captain/FO could remotely trigger the panic system and then lock out the cockpit.

Quoting seahawk (Reply 4):
- 2 widely separated buttons in the cockpit that need to be pressed simultaneously. Those should be placed that one person should be unable to operate them without tools.

If you add the 2 persons rule, I think this is safe enough. (Considering that any tool capable of pressing both buttons would probably cause questions during the security check for the crew.)

Widely separated buttons could be easily operated with concealable tools (Battery + small solenoid or motor) or just a stick of many sorts (cane, selfie stick, pointing stick, electrical cables of any sort, cellphone, computer, toys, rod from a carry on, monopod, tripod, cameras, medical devices, many countless things you can't really ban) it only makes sense to ban things like explosives, knives, guns, ...

Only a 3 person rule is safe enough a 2 person rule doesn't really fix anything as the attacker (of which could be the 2nd person) has the element of surprise and in a 1v1 that is going to have very poor odds. (2v1 is the bare minimum)

[Edited 2015-04-02 04:18:30]
 
tomlee
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 11:24 am

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 5):
bs.... terrorists don't go for hard targets. Never did, never will. Aircraft are hard targets, derailing a train, blowing up a school bus... much, much easier to hit.
The net result of the safety/security trade off is negative.

It is much easier to infiltrate a terrorist into the cabin crew than into the cockpit crew. There were reason why the two- people in the cockpit rule wasn't adopted in some countries, it means that much more people will be in the cockpit on a regular basis, which also decreases security in turn for improving the one-crazy-guy risk.

It is a hard target because of the secure door + cabin environment. Dropping the door entirely in light of the GW case is like screaming out loud to terrorists to test that hardness. Planes without a secure door definitely not a "hard target".

A secure method to unlock the door is the same thing as not having it under your proposal so there is no issue as any proposal that makes the door easier to open including not having a door is valid.
 
tommy1808
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 11:38 am

Quoting tomlee (Reply 7):
It is a hard target because of the secure door

nope. There are still plenty of smaller aircraft w/o such a door, non has been used for a terror strike. You can invite people to fly jump seat all day long and aircraft would still be the by far hardest target that is accessible to the public.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 6):
If they have all the cards the door won't unlock. That is the point of the poison pill pool doing this would actually lock out the door. Not to mention how exactly you would manage to do this before crew members erase their respective keys covertly is another problem on top of that.

"We take over this aircraft for political demands, not to crash it. If the crew does not cooperate, we are all going to die because then we have to blow up this aircraft with this bomb we brought along".

Easy

It is hard to find a hero when people actually have time to reflect. Slim chance of survival will almost always beat the prospect of certain death.

Best regards
Thomas
This Singature is a safe space......
 
tomlee
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 11:57 am

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 8):
"We take over this aircraft for political demands, not to crash it. If the crew does not cooperate, we are all going to die because then we have to blow up this aircraft with this bomb we brought along".

Easy

It is hard to find a hero when people actually have time to reflect. Slim chance of survival will almost always beat the prospect of certain death.

This is why it doesn't depend on one person. It is easier to find a hero if you have a pool of people. Also if it is easy then the plane isn't a hard target as you claim. No one is going to believe a hijacker with that story again because that is the exact same thing they said in 9/11 and all it takes is one of the crew to do what is right. (The we have a bomb, cooperate and no one gets hurt is know to cause thousands to die including those on the plane) And if they do blow up the plane then it is a ground security fault in allowing explosives onto a plane.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 8):
nope. There are still plenty of smaller aircraft w/o such a door, non has been used for a terror strike. You can invite people to fly jump seat all day long and aircraft would still be the by far hardest target that is accessible to the public.

This doesn't have a very good logical flow. Your saying that because people don't hijack smaller planes we shouldn't care if large planes which no modern office building can withstand have the same level of insecurity. (Also if your talking about plenty you mean non-Airbus/Boeing/... planes of which are all very small with less than 20 seats total)

I think your talking about these sized planes,
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2010_Austin_suicide_attack (Listed as a terrorist attack, domestic in origin railing against the taxman. Sure the pilot was the perp, in GW it was the same thing just in that case the 149 people with him couldn't do anything about it which is what this proposal of mines is supposed to fix)

[Edited 2015-04-02 05:16:20]
 
tommy1808
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 12:25 pm

Quoting tomlee (Reply 9):
This is why it doesn't depend on one person

great. But I don't need more than one member of the cockpit crew that rather wants to live to open the door for me.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 9):
Also if it is easy then the plane isn't a hard target as you claim.

getting on board an aircraft with weapons and not being beaten to death by pax and crew is the hard part. The door is only an inconvenience.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 9):
No one is going to believe a hijacker with that story again because that is the exact same thing they said in 9/1

Of course people will believe it, the alternative is certain death. We are hardwired to go for every chance of survival we see, survival instinct is one of the strongest drives we have.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 9):
and all it takes is one of the crew to do what is right

Which is the problem. If you have 10 people knowing that only one of them has to do the right thing, none will. That's why you learn in first aid to point at one bystander and say "you, the man with the red shirt, call an ambulance" instead of "somebody call an ambulance", because if you do that, more often than not, no one will. ..
The magical group size is 4, beyond that people do what the group does, which often means "do nothing".

Quoting tomlee (Reply 9):
Your saying that because people don't hijack smaller planes we shouldn't care if large planes which no modern office building can withstand have the same level of insecurity.

a skyvan isn't exactly a small aircraft. .... The bigger aircraft has safety by numbers, more people...

Quoting tomlee (Reply 9):
And if they do blow up the plane then it is a ground security fault in allowing explosives onto a plane.

I bet that will make the dead crew and dead passengers feel really good....

Cockpit doors are like a store owner wielding an extra inch of steel onto his safe, while still keeping just as much money in the "push-this-button-to-open" cash register. ..
That inch of steel will never kill anyone, armored cockpit doors did and will continue to do so.

Best regards
Thomas
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kengo
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 12:36 pm

While I do think your key pool scheme will work but why add complexity when similar result can be
achieved by issuing three emergency access codes, one to each pilot and to one F/A, and changing
the logic to where if two emergency access codes are entered within a time frame, the system
overrides the door lock command by the pilot inside the cockpit. After assessing the situation, the
F/A with the EAC can determine whether to let the locked out pilot in or not.
 
tomlee
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 1:02 pm

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 10):
great. But I don't need more than one member of the cockpit crew that rather wants to live to open the door for me.

Doesn't help if they are dead, knocked out. And the only other person is the perp.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 10):
getting on board an aircraft with weapons and not being beaten to death by pax and crew is the hard part. The door is only an inconvenience.

Right now the door is much more than an inconvenience and that is good aside from the problem of not opening for authorized users on the pax side it works well in stopping attacks.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 10):
Of course people will believe it, the alternative is certain death. We are hardwired to go for every chance of survival we see, survival instinct is one of the strongest drives we have.

People are also hard-wired with a brain, survival in light of 9/11 is very much reduced if you give in and the key pool is designed to offer plausible deniability you can certainly hand your card over it just won't work they would have no way to identify who is lying or who erased their key. When the poison pill pool is made no other crew members are supposed to share what state their card is unless they need to use it. In this manner you can't force the key pool information out of any one person or even tell if they are lying. The covert erase means that a terrorist wouldn't be able to detect subversion and it is a one way operation. Once the poison pill pool is used it can't be undone and after one failure you can just tell them it will never work anymore.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 10):
Which is the problem. If you have 10 people knowing that only one of them has to do the right thing, none will. That's why you learn in first aid to point at one bystander and say "you, the man with the red shirt, call an ambulance" instead of "somebody call an ambulance", because if you do that, more often than not, no one will. ..
The magical group size is 4, beyond that people do what the group does, which often means "do nothing".

Really so then your whole passenger cabin would defeat any terrorist fails under the same logic. If you have 10 people who are trained to do the right thing and are well aware of the risks and consequences of failing to do so many will do it. What your talking about is called the bystander effect which doesn't apply to people directly involved and trained for the situation they are in. The crew isn't the general public. Also the number of cabin crew on GW is 4 so magic group size achieved, and you can control the numbers for the keys as needed (it is flexible).

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 10):
skyvan isn't exactly a small aircraft. .... The bigger aircraft has safety by numbers, more people...

Compared to an A380 it is a tiny aircraft (A380 has a MTOW of 575,000 kg compared to a skyvan which at most can take off with 5,670 kg that is a factor of 100 in mass alone)

office buildings can handle a skyvan, but no office tower could even remotely tolerate a collision with an A380.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 10):
I bet that will make the dead crew and dead passengers feel really good....

Cockpit doors are like a store owner wielding an extra inch of steel onto his safe, while still keeping just as much money in the "push-this-button-to-open" cash register. ..
That inch of steel will never kill anyone, armored cockpit doors did and will continue to do so.

It makes them feel better than crashing into a mountain or building after minutes of being lied too in the worst possible way.

Secure cockpit doors make sense just having a method to unlock them securely makes even more sense.

[Edited 2015-04-02 06:34:08]
 
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seahawk
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 1:09 pm

Imho the fact that the system constantly allows the total lock-down is a design fault, especially if you have had situations with just one person inside the secure area.

Imho the simple solution is to have 2 person in the cockpit, the next is to make it hard to override a valid door opening request if you are alone inside the cockpit.

The 2 switches in the cockpit could be a push to turn solution with spring return. Very hard to manipulate with a tool, yet easy to use.
 
tomlee
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 1:10 pm

Quoting kengo (Reply 11):
While I do think your key pool scheme will work but why add complexity when similar result can be
achieved by issuing three emergency access codes, one to each pilot and to one F/A, and changing
the logic to where if two emergency access codes are entered within a time frame, the system
overrides the door lock command by the pilot inside the cockpit. After assessing the situation, the
F/A with the EAC can determine whether to let the locked out pilot in or not.

Using pin codes in general is a bad idea (they are fixed codes even now and they are technically allowed to use a 2 digit code for the emergency pin), the reason the override lockout exists as it does now is because they know the code could leak out and to remove the avenue of attack they have the lockout in control of the flight deck side.

If the emergency access codes where created randomly and securely for every flight then it would be impossible to guess or steal the code as it constantly changes and only the door actually knows the full key. You can't expect a human to remember a complex long password that constantly changes so you store it in a little erasable reusable device. The device also allows people to give up under duress situations while still resisting the attacker by covertly erasing their device. Because they have to be used together in a group the attacker has no means of isolating a person for lying.

Combined with a poison pill system even if they used all the keys at once they have no why to identify which one is which. It becomes a complex randomized logic game that just gets worse when you add more people to the pool if you don't have their full cooperation.
 
tomlee
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 1:24 pm

Quoting seahawk (Reply 13):

Imho the fact that the system constantly allows the total lock-down is a design fault, especially if you have had situations with just one person inside the secure area.

Imho the simple solution is to have 2 person in the cockpit, the next is to make it hard to override a valid door opening request if you are alone inside the cockpit.

The 2 switches in the cockpit could be a push to turn solution with spring return. Very hard to manipulate with a tool, yet easy to use.

Now your talking about a mechanical puzzle if you apply tension before you push the switch will stick and all you have to do is push it like a normal button to activate it as it will turn after you push it in due to the previously applied tension. Applying tension to both before you try to press then simultaneously is as simple as using a rubber band or other elastic device such as a spring or bits of string.

You then use a stick and presto the door is locked out. Alternatively if your getting fancy you can just get a motor to do both actions in a tiny concealable package.

Cockpits are designed to be easy to reach controls and putting this lockout switch somewhere difficult to reach would mean it doesn't go into a standard location which is free to put a control which means modifying the cockpit in a costly manner. This still does nothing to stop a planned attack against the two switches which uses very difficult to ban common objects.
 
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kanban
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 3:46 pm

So we first upgrade the doors as a knee jerk reaction to 9/11, now we want to add overrides due to another one off incident.. the more we add complexity, the easier it is for something to go wrong..

chances are what ever is proposed will backfire and lead to another knee jerk solution of questionable benefit in an actual situation. I see others have proposed that the computers take over if the ground proximity warnings are ignored (or other warnings) there is no guarantee that the computer will prevent the disaster or one of a different nature.. or that the rogue pilot vs computer battle will have a better outcome.

In this instance and several others recently, better staff training and medical monitoring would have solved the problem. Technological solutions to one off events aren't worth the expense or complexity.
 
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seahawk
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 4:06 pm

Quoting tomlee (Reply 15):
Now your talking about a mechanical puzzle if you apply tension before you push the switch will stick and all you have to do is push it like a normal button to activate it as it will turn after you push it in due to the previously applied tension.

The igniter switch on a 727/737 works that way.
 
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Jetlagged
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 4:13 pm

At the moment the last word on who gets access to the cockpit remains with those in the cockpit. It's hard to see how that can change. Making it more difficult to operate the deny access switch will only create more problems. However it should be possible to develop a system which could detect how many people are in the cockpit and disable denial of entry if only one person was in there.
The glass isn't half empty, or half full, it's twice as big as it needs to be.
 
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seahawk
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 4:35 pm

In my idea the actual switch would stay the same, the override function would have to be enabled (either by the FA with buttons in the cabin) or by the pilots activating the "lock down" option by pressing two switches simultaneously.

I just thought of another option.

Have an emergency button in the front galley and give each pilot an electronic key. If both keys are entered into the system a valid door opening request can be denied. If one pilot leaves the cockpit he takes his key with him. Then the override would only work if the emergency button in the galley was activated.
 
mjoelnir
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 4:39 pm

Just do away with the locked door of the cockpit. It was a knee jerk reaction after 9/11 and not done to safe the airplane, but to protect targets against airplanes used as weapons.

The problem was not the open cockpit door, but insufficient security for domestic flying in the USA and a wrong mindset regarding hijackers by crew and passengers.

The locked door is not only providing security against hijackers, but is on the other side a security risk in regards to other occurrences.

- A malicious person in the cockpit can lock everybody else out.
- It has also happened that a malfunctioning door has locked flying personal out of the cockpit.
 
tommy1808
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 4:58 pm

Quoting tomlee (Reply 12):

Right now the door is much more than an inconvenience

i don´t see any reason why it would be more than an inconvenience...

Quoting tomlee (Reply 12):
and that is good aside from the problem of not opening for authorized users

It kills people. So far those doors killed at least 151 people and enabled at least two hijackings that otherwise would not have been possible. And there is a decent chance that MH370 will end up on that list as well. If there ever is a security feature in aviation that wrecked safety, it is those damn doors.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 12):
People are also hard-wired with a brain,

You do live on the same planet i do, right? You know, the one on which professional pilots pull the stick back until they smack into the south atlantic, run up a tunnel with a burning train in it and usually swamp one of the available emergency exit and ignore the others? There are probably only one in a couple of 1000 people that react smart and coherent in a stress situation.
And no amount of brain will make people choose certain death over even the slightest chance of survival. Unless they are mentally ill.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 12):
and trained for the situation they are in

you can train CPR in a realistic environment, you can´t train hijacking realistically. Any idea how many soldiers in combat deliberately miss unless the thread to their live becomes imminent? And that is ALL they train for and still plenty fold up under stress. And you expect a crew to flawlessly perform duties *that will get them killed* just because they train for it once a year or once every 3 month? Get real.....

Quoting tomlee (Reply 12):
Really so then your whole passenger cabin would defeat any terrorist fails under the same logic

Yes, because that is what will save their lives. That is the opposite of what you expect the...

Quoting tomlee (Reply 12):
10 people who are trained to do the right thing

to do, something that eliminates their only chance of survival.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 12):
and are well aware of the risks and consequences of failing to do so many will do it.

being aware of the consequences will stop them from doing the right thing. People usually don´t willingly give their lives to save people, unless they are close friends and family, and even than you´d be pretty stupid to relay on that. Those people in the office building a neither, and normally neither are the passengers or the other members of the crew.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 12):
The crew isn't the general public. Also the number of cabin crew on GW is 4 so magic group size achieved, and you can control the numbers for the keys as needed (it is flexible).

they still won´t commit suicide. That is movies, mentally ill people and maybe one in a million by sense of duty... we do have heroes because they are so damn rare, if "doing the right thing" was normal, we wouldn´t even have that word.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 12):

Compared to an A380 it is a tiny aircraft (A380 has a MTOW of 575,000 kg compared to a skyvan which at most can take off with 5,670 kg that is a factor of 100 in mass alone)

office buildings can handle a skyvan, but no office tower could even remotely tolerate a collision with an A380.

You are like the combat pilot that stares at the altimeter instead of bailing out. If i can´t get a large wide body aircraft to carry out my strike, i don´t go home and mumble in my beard, i find another way to blow up that building. If i can´t find a way to blow up a building, i find a target i can get to. Every dictatorship ever tried to put down insurgents, resistance groups and such, with none of the boundaries of a free and open society. Name one that succeeded. Those terrorist aircraft hijacking special forces didn´t retire after 9/11, they just found softer targets. Until 9/11 aircraft where fairly soft targets in the bang for risk category and today they are the hardest target there is. With or without armored cockpit door.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 12):
It makes them feel better than crashing into a mountain or building after minutes of being lied too in the worst possible way.

It would, correct, but they will never know if they would have really ended up in a building, would they. Their last thought will be "i should have opened that damn door". And after the VCR is recovered, we, the media and the government will discuss if cooperation really isn´t a better way. The good´ol "horses are gone, close the gate" reflex...

Quoting tomlee (Reply 12):


Secure cockpit doors make sense just having a method to unlock them securely makes even more sense.

secure cockpit door are a proven safety hazard and will continue to do so. While your idea is not that bad at all, it only improves a very, very bad idea.

best regards
Thomas
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tomlee
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 6:08 pm

Quoting kanban (Reply 16):
So we first upgrade the doors as a knee jerk reaction to 9/11, now we want to add overrides due to another one off incident.. the more we add complexity, the easier it is for something to go wrong..

If the complexity allows "something to go wrong" what is that something it is just a access control measure instead of relying on a static pin code which already allowed many things to go wrong. From the get go relying on an insecure method to unlock the door resulted in using a lockdown as the only prevention mechanism for abuse.

Quoting kanban (Reply 16):
chances are what ever is proposed will backfire and lead to another knee jerk solution of questionable benefit in an actual situation. I see others have proposed that the computers take over if the ground proximity warnings are ignored (or other warnings) there is no guarantee that the computer will prevent the disaster or one of a different nature.. or that the rogue pilot vs computer battle will have a better outcome.

In this instance and several others recently, better staff training and medical monitoring would have solved the problem. Technological solutions to one off events aren't worth the expense or complexity.

This type of logic falls flat of its face when planes are one of the most technology filled vehicles on the planet. Compared to a computer which can fly the plane (FBW does this) and offers even more protections is far more complex and expensive while still being doable. Updating the door controller is no where near as expensive or complex in any form.

Better staff training and medical monitoring won't fix anything because it will just be hidden/lied/buried and even more events and copycats will crop up if the door isn't fixed. Technological solutions to one off events have been implemented and the door design has been physically updated at least twice in the past in response to risks revealed from single events.

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 18):
At the moment the last word on who gets access to the cockpit remains with those in the cockpit. It's hard to see how that can change. Making it more difficult to operate the deny access switch will only create more problems. However it should be possible to develop a system which could detect how many people are in the cockpit and disable denial of entry if only one person was in there.

Any system that detects how many people are inside could easily be tricked like any other occupancy sensor. It provides no means of secure authentication that the person is really there or not. A cabin crew pool is meant to offer a secure means to open the door so that you don't need the lockdown for the door to still be secure.

Quoting seahawk (Reply 19):
In my idea the actual switch would stay the same, the override function would have to be enabled (either by the FA with buttons in the cabin) or by the pilots activating the "lock down" option by pressing two switches simultaneously.

I just thought of another option.

Have an emergency button in the front galley and give each pilot an electronic key. If both keys are entered into the system a valid door opening request can be denied. If one pilot leaves the cockpit he takes his key with him. Then the override would only work if the emergency button in the galley was activated.

So your going to have three switches in the cockpit on the first scenario where they have to press two simultaneously then use the existing one. Having multiple buttons or any buttons spread throughout the cabin is going to be far to costly and easy to DoS.

The second scenario doesn't defend against other person from surprise attacking to other upon return and then closing the door before the other crew can intervene. Not only that galley button would have to latch if pressed to allow the lockdown in the cockpit to function correctly how long do you allow the button press to allow a single user to activate the lockdown and what happens when the button breaks or is forced in. If a terrorist attacked when a pilot leaves the cockpit and can control just one area or one button to be specific they can deprive the locking function from working and open the door using the access codes which are static pins.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 20):

Just do away with the locked door of the cockpit. It was a knee jerk reaction after 9/11 and not done to safe the airplane, but to protect targets against airplanes used as weapons.

Getting rid of the secure door entirely after a crash would be also by the same logic a knee jerk reaction and short sighted since it just puts you into a pre-9/11 situation and while it would allow for people to fight back there is also going to be no resistance offered to attackers trying to get into the cockpit.

The door technically protects the plane and the people on the ground not just one group.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 21):
i don´t see any reason why it would be more than an inconvenience...

It is like saying a locked door or vault is an "inconvenience" which isn't really correct they exist for a reason.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 21):
It kills people. So far those doors killed at least 151 people and enabled at least two hijackings that otherwise would not have been possible. And there is a decent chance that MH370 will end up on that list as well. If there ever is a security feature in aviation that wrecked safety, it is those damn doors.

Yes I agree GW and MH370 could have been at minimum enabled by the existing door logic but if you have a means to open the door without getting rid of the door entirely that would achieve the same objective of preventing these situations from existing while still getting the benefit of having a secure door.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 21):
You do live on the same planet i do, right? You know, the one on which professional pilots pull the stick back until they smack into the south atlantic, run up a tunnel with a burning train in it and usually swamp one of the available emergency exit and ignore the others? There are probably only one in a couple of 1000 people that react smart and coherent in a stress situation.
And no amount of brain will make people choose certain death over even the slightest chance of survival. Unless they are mentally ill.

You said 4 is the magic number for people to still react without the bystander effect applying (even though it already doesn't apply in the situation) now your arguing that everyone is incompetent and only 1 in 1000 will do anything remotely correct when under stress?

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 21):
you can train CPR in a realistic environment, you can´t train hijacking realistically. Any idea how many soldiers in combat deliberately miss unless the thread to their live becomes imminent? And that is ALL they train for and still plenty fold up under stress. And you expect a crew to flawlessly perform duties *that will get them killed* just because they train for it once a year or once every 3 month? Get real.....

Of course you can train for a hijacking you have people specialized in security testing/training do ground tests with crew to simulate various modes of attack. So your saying all soldiers are now incompetent too except for 1 in a 1000 who do in fact do it correctly, I think your pulling numbers out of thin air right now?

This incompetence argument is very hollow, all it takes is a few of the crew to act correctly and it will potentially save their lives. (Get them all killed is not having a door or having pin codes they force out of crew members)

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 21):
Yes, because that is what will save their lives. That is the opposite of what you expect the... to do, something that eliminates their only chance of survival.

The only thing that eliminates their only chance of survival is caving into allowing someone to hijack the plane. Since the key system is public knowledge and can be announced in the public safety demo at the start even the passengers can help secure the system against hijackers even if the crew is completely useless and incompetent for some reason.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 21):
being aware of the consequences will stop them from doing the right thing. People usually don´t willingly give their lives to save people, unless they are close friends and family, and even than you´d be pretty stupid to relay on that. Those people in the office building a neither, and normally neither are the passengers or the other members of the crew.

This doesn't logically follow if they are already aware of the consequences and you believe the pax as a group would act then the crew would act in the same way. Caving to the demands of an attacker is a horrible idea post 9/11. The key pool doesn't require they give up their individual lives as the attack won't know who is lying and once a key is erased there is no going back and similar for the poison pill system.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 21):
they still won´t commit suicide. That is movies, mentally ill people and maybe one in a million by sense of duty... we do have heroes because they are so damn rare, if "doing the right thing" was normal, we wouldn´t even have that word.

I don't see why we wouldn't have the phrase as doing the right thing applies to ethics, legal, moral questions that have nothing to do with sacrificing yourself. Your saying that everyone is a coward but at the same time everyone is not a coward and it doesn't logically follow. There is no difference between the pax/crew under your logic and if the pax would fight back then so would the crew.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 21):

Quoting tomlee (Reply 12):

Compared to an A380 it is a tiny aircraft (A380 has a MTOW of 575,000 kg compared to a skyvan which at most can take off with 5,670 kg that is a factor of 100 in mass alone)

office buildings can handle a skyvan, but no office tower could even remotely tolerate a collision with an A380.

You are like the combat pilot that stares at the altimeter instead of bailing out. If i can´t get a large wide body aircraft to carry out my strike, i don´t go home and mumble in my beard, i find another way to blow up that building. If i can´t find a way to blow up a building, i find a target i can get to. Every dictatorship ever tried to put down insurgents, resistance groups and such, with none of the boundaries of a free and open society. Name one that succeeded. Those terrorist aircraft hijacking special forces didn´t retire after 9/11, they just found softer targets. Until 9/11 aircraft where fairly soft targets in the bang for risk category and today they are the hardest target there is. With or without armored cockpit door.

This also has no logical train of thought. Protecting a much more massive vehicle from mis-use makes a lot of sense instead of saying because very small planes can't be secured we shouldn't bother securing extremely large planes. It is like saying a high explosive charge doesn't need any security over a firework.

Your assuming the cabin will do something which is the same assumption the cabin key pool relies upon for security. After that point the door in your perspective isn't there any more so it solves the problem without removing the door.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 21):
It would, correct, but they will never know if they would have really ended up in a building, would they. Their last thought will be "i should have opened that damn door". And after the VCR is recovered, we, the media and the government will discuss if cooperation really isn´t a better way. The good´ol "horses are gone, close the gate" reflex...

I don't think it is very easy to hide the fact your flying low and over a city centre.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 21):
secure cockpit door are a proven safety hazard and will continue to do so. While your idea is not that bad at all, it only improves a very, very bad idea.

Yes they are a safety hazard and I'm proposing to fix that hazard so that it doesn't continue to do so. Improving a very bad idea is better than going back to the even worse idea of no security at all.
 
bennett123
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 7:08 pm

In this instance, giving each pilot a key would have solved the problem.
 
tomlee
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 7:18 pm

Quoting bennett123 (Reply 23):

In this instance, giving each pilot a key would have solved the problem.

Yes it would but that would weaken the door security significantly as the physical key could not be changed often and could be copied easily at any point in time. Maybe if you used an abloy protec2 + their cliq electronic supplemental lock control key (they are currently unpickable, difficult to copy) it would help a little bit but you could also just attack the captain when he is outside the cockpit or steal a spare key from the ground. The idea of a key pool is that you can constantly change the codes and mix up the distribution of keys so that no terrorist can abuse the system but the crew can still use it easily and no single person holds the keys.

Right now it makes no sense how the cockpit door is secured by means of a numerical lock essentially and the only enhancement is to allow for the door to be locked out which clearly has unintended side effects. A proper physical key system would be very costly to maintain while a stand alone electronic locking system wouldn't entail machining many blanks at secure chain of custody factories and shipping since the electronic keys are essentially re-keyed per flight without any cost per re-key.

[Edited 2015-04-02 12:27:18]
 
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 7:35 pm

Quoting bennett123 (Reply 23):
In this instance, giving each pilot a key would have solved the problem.

Except that a key could easily be taken by a hijacker. That's why there's an entry denial system in the cockpit.
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 7:40 pm

Quoting seahawk (Reply 19):
In my idea the actual switch would stay the same, the override function would have to be enabled (either by the FA with buttons in the cabin) or by the pilots activating the "lock down" option by pressing two switches simultaneously.

In a hijacking a system operated by an FA is potentially compromised. Requiring both pilots to simultaneously deny entry is tricky if one of the pilot's is trying to fly the plane at the time.

Quoting seahawk (Reply 19):
Have an emergency button in the front galley and give each pilot an electronic key. If both keys are entered into the system a valid door opening request can be denied. If one pilot leaves the cockpit he takes his key with him. Then the override would only work if the emergency button in the galley was activated.

That's not very secure either.
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tomlee
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 7:43 pm

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 25):
Except that a key could easily be taken by a hijacker. That's why there's an entry denial system in the cockpit.

Instead of entry denial you just have the key spread out then to have the entire key taken by the hijacker they first have to know who has the good/bad keys (which is randomized) and has to attack more than one person which the crew and rest of the cabin passengers could fight back against before they could assemble the key. With the erase mechanism even if they do eventually take the cabin over completely the covert ability to erase the key allows cabin crew to effectively lock out the door from their end.

Because the system relies in numbers no one bad actor amongst the crew/passengers would be able to abuse the door in either direction. Which is the point of the cabin key pool no single person has the key and it requires a cooperative group effort to open the door.
 
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 8:14 pm

Quoting tomlee (Reply 27):
Instead of entry denial you just have the key spread out then to have the entire key taken by the hijacker they first have to know who has the good/bad keys (which is randomized) and has to attack more than one person which the crew and rest of the cabin passengers could fight back against before they could assemble the key. With the erase mechanism even if they do eventually take the cabin over completely the covert ability to erase the key allows cabin crew to effectively lock out the door from their end.

They just kill one person at a time until the cabin gives in. Anyway the system you describe is extremely complex. What if the covert erasure is activated inadvertently?

Quoting tomlee (Reply 22):
Any system that detects how many people are inside could easily be tricked like any other occupancy sensor. It provides no means of secure authentication that the person is really there or not.

Obviously it needs to track cockpit occupancy from a known secure start point (e.g. at the gate). Any time the cockpit door is closed and two people are inside then the system can assume they are both good guys. If a bad guy has got in the cockpit somehow then door locking comes under the same heading as bolting the stable door after the horse has bolted.
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tomlee
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 8:27 pm

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 28):
They just kill one person at a time until the cabin gives in. Anyway the system you describe is extremely complex. What if the covert erasure is activated inadvertently?

You can make it two button, apple patented slide to unlock just in a mechanical slider with dedents so it would require intention force to slide, and or have them remove the battery which would achieve the same effect. It would be difficult to inadvertently do this.

It isn't extremely complex it is just a bunch of keycards that can be erased with some added logic to make attack even harder. Why would the cabin give in the act of killing people one at a time would allow plenty of time for the erase to occur which would not be reversible so there would be no point in killing people if the system in mathematically impossible to unlock because the keys don't exist anymore. The point is to make attackers not want to attack the system in the first place killing people wouldn't recover the key and you just risk allowing people even more time to lie/erase.

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 28):
Obviously it needs to track cockpit occupancy from a known secure start point (e.g. at the gate). Any time the cockpit door is closed and two people are inside then the system can assume they are both good guys. If a bad guy has got in the cockpit somehow then door locking comes under the same heading as bolting the stable door after the horse has bolted.

How is the system supposed to know how many people are in the cockpit. Even if you know there are two in there at the start the moment the door opens in flight the count of people becomes indeterminate as more than one person can enter/exit per door opening.

Standard occupancy sensors don't do this and you would have to use a computer vision system to do some face detection coupled with multiple weight sensors installed into panels in the floors and chairs to check for a fake person (which is just a triangle and two dots). This by definition is very complex and structurally difficult to integrate which is a actually a very complex system. You can't install turnstile there is no space a break beams can be tricked/miscount, motion sensors can be tricked and lack the accuracy, weight sensors are very expensive to integrate, and a computer vision system can be tricked and is even more complex.

Not really the more correct example is a murderer broke into your house and locked out the police because the door design was poorly thought out.

Key card systems are not overly complex and the complexity required to attack is by design while the authorized use in practice is very simple just insert your keys and the door opens.

[Edited 2015-04-02 13:38:51]
 
tommy1808
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 8:47 pm

Quoting tomlee (Reply 22):
It is like saying a locked door or vault is an "inconvenience" which isn't really correct they exist for a reason.

If a good portion of the money is unprotected in the cash register in the counter (=just blowing up the plane), a locked vault with the remainder of the cash is an inconvenience.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 22):
Yes I agree GW and MH370 could have been at minimum enabled by the existing door logic but if you have a means to open the door without getting rid of the door entirely that would achieve the same objective of preventing these situations from existing while still getting the benefit of having a secure door.

It wouldn´t change anything at all. Instead of leisurely gliding down to impact, he would just push the stick to the side on short final. Same result.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 22):
You said 4 is the magic number for people to still react without the bystander effect applying

i never used the number with the bystander effect, however it does apply there. Humans form a herd with 5 and more people. That goes for everything. A group of 5 people will walk with the same speed, uniformly, in smaller groups someone will always move ahead or lag behind.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 22):
now your arguing that everyone is incompetent and only 1 in 1000 will do anything remotely correct when under stress?

With regards to your concept, yes. About one in a 1000 or so will throw himself into a sword to safe strangers, to "do the right thing". I don´t see how both statements are contradictory at all.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 22):

This incompetence argument is very hollow, all it takes is a few of the crew to act correctly and it will potentially save their lives. (Get them all killed is not having a door or having pin codes they force out of crew members)

No, it will never safe their live. It will only and always forfit their lives. Remember, if i can´t open up the door, i blow up the plane right away. That usually includes the death of everyone in it. "Oh, you mean you really won´t open the door? Bummer.... i go back to my seat then. And i think i need a whiskey. Make it a double please".
Nope: "you won´t open the door? OK *bang*"

Quoting tomlee (Reply 22):
The only thing that eliminates their only chance of survival is caving into allowing someone to hijack the plane.

You didn´t follow the news much before 9/11, did you? By far, far, far most hijackings where the sort where the terrorists only wanted plane, pax and crew for blackmail. In your scenario you require the crew to commit suicide and let all their passengers die just to prevent being used as leverage.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 22):
Since the key system is public knowledge and can be announced in the public safety demo at the start

Great. So it will be public knowledge that boxcutters won´t cut it this time and you´d have to bring a bomb. Terrorists may not be the brightest lights in the sky, but i guess they´d pick up on that.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 22):
even if the crew is completely useless and incompetent for some reason.

...or they just want to survive.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 22):
Caving to the demands of an attacker is a horrible idea post 9/11

True. But it is some orders of magnitude better than "Hi Mr. Terrorist. We deleted our lockout key, nä nänä nä nä ..... go ahead, blow us up."

Quoting tomlee (Reply 22):
The key pool doesn't require they give up their individual lives as the attack won't know who is lying and once a key is erased there is no going back and similar for the poison pill system.

Why would i care who is lying. Open the door or we all die RIGHT NOW.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 22):
This doesn't logically follow if they are already aware of the consequences and you believe the pax as a group would act then the crew would act in the same way

Nah, you just keep ignoring the argument. Passengers and Crew attacking the hijackers increases the, and may be the only way to, chances of survival. Deleting your key ensures your demise. The former can be expected from pretty much everyone, the latter... not so much.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 22):
I don't see why we wouldn't have the phrase as doing the right thing applies to ethics, legal, moral questions that have nothing to do with sacrificing yourself.

Because in that case we´d already have a word for that: normal. Hero means by definition doing something that isn´t normal....

Quoting tomlee (Reply 22):
Your saying that everyone is a coward but at the same time everyone is not a coward and it doesn't logically follow. There is no difference between the pax/crew under your logic and if the pax would fight back then so would the crew.

Nah, you just refuse to wrap your head around the fact that terrorists that are hindered by that door will just kill everyone. Everyone wants to survive. That is the strongest instinct we have. Saving others at the expense of your own life is way, way, way down the list.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 22):
Protecting a much more massive vehicle from mis-use makes a lot of sense instead of saying because very small planes can't be secured we shouldn't bother securing extremely large planes.

you are still wielding a steel plate onto the safe in the store that has most its money in the cash register. And door guards with X-Ray machines at metal detectors at the door. When something is safe, it is safe. Adding extra security won´t increase the overall security, if it hurts safety, like armored doors, the over all situation gets worse.
Those normal hijackers, those that have political demands and only use plane, crew and pax as leverage don´t need to open that door, picking up the phone and telling the cockpit crew "fly us to Kinshasa or we start killing passengers" they will fly them to Kinshasa. Just like before with the none armored doors. How many of those did we have since 9/11 in countries with airport security to current standards? Zero. Obviously the increased security on the ground is already deterring every attempt. There is almost 1.5 decades of data supporting that theory. And with no terrorists coming on board, there is nothing those doors can protect against, right? Hence they are only a very bad idea that kills people. Including an TK Captain btw..... its not like GW and maybe MH370 where firsts...

Quoting tomlee (Reply 22):

Your assuming the cabin will do something which is the same assumption the cabin key pool relies upon for security. After that point the door in your perspective isn't there any more so it solves the problem without removing the door.

Again: attacking the hijackers is an attempt to save your live, deleting your key means committing suicide.

Quoting tomlee (Reply 22):

I don't think it is very easy to hide the fact your flying low and over a city centre.

i guess the smoking crater may also provide a good pointer or two. Are you trying to make a point with that statement? The CVR will contain the evidence that the hijackers wanted the aircraft for leverage. That they wanted to fly the aircraft into a building is a supposition on your part, hardly and hijackers ever wanted to do that. Hence we will see the same reversal of thinking as we see to day (No one should be able to enter the cockpit w/o cockpit consent vs. there has to be a way to get back in against their will).

Quoting tomlee (Reply 22):
Improving a very bad idea is better than going back to the even worse idea of no security at all.

Since the door is only relevant if terrorists with weapons get on board, and considering that terrorists with weapons can kill everyone on board independent of getting into the cockpit, the door provides pretty much no additional security for a enormous loss in safety.

best regards
Thomas
This Singature is a safe space......
 
tommy1808
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 8:53 pm

Quoting tomlee (Reply 29):
How is the system supposed to know how many people are in the cockpit.

Oh, that is simple. A customer of mine makes a system that uses a camera signal to not just count people (reliable, it is certified for limited occupancy applications, so even with large groups), tell you the gender, age range and mood with a good hit rate as well. They even make software to identify intentions (will attempts to climb fence alert) with an acceptable false positive rate. Oh.. and identify people by how they walk with incredible low false positive and false negative values.

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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 9:05 pm

Quoting tomlee (Reply 29):
You can make it two button, apple patented slide to unlock just in a mechanical slider with dedents so it would require intention force to slide, and or have them remove the battery which would achieve the same effect. It would be difficult to inadvertently do this.

It isn't extremely complex it is just a bunch of keycards that can be erased with some added logic to make attack even harder. Why would the cabin give in the act of killing people one at a time would allow plenty of time for the erase to occur which would not be reversible so there would be no point in killing people if the system in mathematically impossible to unlock because the keys don't exist anymore. The point is to make attackers not want to attack the system in the first place killing people wouldn't recover the key and you just risk allowing people even more time to lie/erase.

Well how do you think the flight crew will react while the cabin is being decimated? Human nature being what it is the door will eventually be opened to stop the bloodshed.

Once it becomes known the cabin crew can disable keycards the first thing any hijacker would do would be to kill/disable/take hostage all the cabin crew.

Your cardkey system sounds very complex to me with multiple erasable cards. Not to mention the signals necessary to activate or erase them. Hopefully it operates in flight safe mode  
Quoting tomlee (Reply 29):
How is the system supposed to know how many people are in the cockpit. Even if you know there are two in there at the start the moment the door opens in flight the count of people becomes indeterminate as more than one person can enter/exit per door opening.

Standard occupancy sensors don't do this and you would have to use a computer vision system to do some face detection coupled with multiple weight sensors installed into panels in the floors and chairs to check for a fake person (which is just a triangle and two dots). This by definition is very complex and structurally difficult to integrate which is a actually a very complex system. You can't install turnstile there is no space a break beams can be tricked/miscount, motion sensors can be tricked and lack the accuracy, weight sensors are very expensive to integrate, and a computer vision system can be tricked and is even more complex.

It would need to be an imaging system in the flight deck, and all that needs is a couple of sensors to provide directional information. It's not difficult to track movement and so determine a human being is present and how many of them. You talked about turnstiles and beams, not me. Rather than fill the whole cabin with wireless signals have a passive detection system in the flightdeck.
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 9:25 pm

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 30):
If a good portion of the money is unprotected in the cash register in the counter (=just blowing up the plane), a locked vault with the remainder of the cash is an inconvenience.

This example doesn't work because the money is control of the flight if you wanted to blow up a plane there are many other ways that don't require any interaction and that logic is why no one is going to believe you when you say I have a bomb just cooperate. Having the money locked behind a secure door makes sense.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 30):
It wouldn´t change anything at all. Instead of leisurely gliding down to impact, he would just push the stick to the side on short final. Same result.

I guess you never read the actual proposal which already included this criticism and it doesn't apply to these scenarios and is not the same result as crashing from cruising at high speed into a mountain. When your on short final near the ground the chances of survival are much greater than crashing so violently into a mountain.

The point is to prevent the attacker from having the ability to aim/steer the plane for any length of time. If the only failure is a crash at a critical phase of flight when the plane is slowest, closest to emergency response then that is a very big improvement over having planes disappear out at sea or crash into a mountain.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 30):
i never used the number with the bystander effect, however it does apply there. Humans form a herd with 5 and more people. That goes for everything. A group of 5 people will walk with the same speed, uniformly, in smaller groups someone will always move ahead or lag behind.

Really, I think you said 4 right here,

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 10):
The magical group size is 4, beyond that people do what the group does, which often means "do nothing".

Your giving the same number (4) again by saying >=5. You should really stop pulling numbers out of thin air as it just make your statements completely false.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 30):
With regards to your concept, yes. About one in a 1000 or so will throw himself into a sword to safe strangers, to "do the right thing". I don´t see how both statements are contradictory at all.

United 93 was not 1 out of 1000 passengers on the plane (the flight didn't even have 1000 people) but there were a lot more than just one person so your statistic out of the blue falls flat on its face. The entire cabin crew and passengers say F the terrorists who cares if there is a bomb if they are just going to crash into a building anyway. (Why exactly would the crew or passengers ever trust a terrorist again?)

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 30):
No, it will never safe their live. It will only and always forfit their lives. Remember, if i can´t open up the door, i blow up the plane right away. That usually includes the death of everyone in it. "Oh, you mean you really won´t open the door? Bummer.... i go back to my seat then. And i think i need a whiskey. Make it a double please".
Nope: "you won´t open the door? OK *bang*"

Why the terrorist likely doesn't have a bomb or if they do it will just light their underpants on fire in reality or if it actually went off not compromise the plane structure. No one is going to believe them or trust them post 9/11.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 30):
You didn´t follow the news much before 9/11, did you? By far, far, far most hijackings where the sort where the terrorists only wanted plane, pax and crew for blackmail. In your scenario you require the crew to commit suicide and let all their passengers die just to prevent being used as leverage.

Great. So it will be public knowledge that boxcutters won´t cut it this time and you´d have to bring a bomb. Terrorists may not be the brightest lights in the sky, but i guess they´d pick up on that.

...or they just want to survive.

True. But it is some orders of magnitude better than "Hi Mr. Terrorist. We deleted our lockout key, nä nänä nä nä ..... go ahead, blow us up."

Most hijackings and the one people will remember are two different things. I still remember 9/11 clear as day, compared to everything else 9/11 was a game changer. The logic of giving into terrorists because they won't crash the plane was totally shattered by 9/11 and no one is going to trust a terrorist's word.

Getting a large enough bomb on a plane to blow it out of the sky is not trivial, explosives themselves are very controlled on the ground due to security concerns with ground attacks let alone a plane attack. Compared to a box cutter explosives are much harder to sneak on board without them failing due to your crotch moisture.

You don't have to tell them you erased it is the point once it is done that is it the door lock won't unlock. (It allows the person to hide their resistance before the terrorists can even pressure them)

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 30):
Nah, you just keep ignoring the argument. Passengers and Crew attacking the hijackers increases the, and may be the only way to, chances of survival. Deleting your key ensures your demise. The former can be expected from pretty much everyone, the latter... not so much.

How exactly does opening the door increase your chances of survival a terrorist would just fly it into the one world trade centre after that. I don't think passenger or crew would ever allow a door to be unlocked by a terrorist even if the crew tries to give up.

Deleting your key ensures the flight deck stays secure.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 30):
Because in that case we´d already have a word for that: normal. Hero means by definition doing something that isn´t normal....

Doing what your trained and paid to do is normal. Doing the right thing doesn't entail self-sacrifice and if it is part of your job then it is normal regardless if people call you a hero or not.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 30):
Nah, you just refuse to wrap your head around the fact that terrorists that are hindered by that door will just kill everyone. Everyone wants to survive. That is the strongest instinct we have. Saving others at the expense of your own life is way, way, way down the list.

If they kill everyone and still can't unlock the door then that is still better than letting them in and the plane crashing into a building anyway as you all still die. The strongest instinct we have is to survive and post 9/11 caving to terrorists is directly equated in people's brains to all dying in a crash.

Are you saying if you could somehow open the current cockpit door you individually would stand up and say "terrorist, I will open the door for you because it is in my best interests". (Zero logic for self preservation)

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 30):
you are still wielding a steel plate onto the safe in the store that has most its money in the cash register. And door guards with X-Ray machines at metal detectors at the door. When something is safe, it is safe. Adding extra security won´t increase the overall security, if it hurts safety, like armored doors, the over all situation gets worse.
Those normal hijackers, those that have political demands and only use plane, crew and pax as leverage don´t need to open that door, picking up the phone and telling the cockpit crew "fly us to Kinshasa or we start killing passengers" they will fly them to Kinshasa. Just like before with the none armored doors. How many of those did we have since 9/11 in countries with airport security to current standards? Zero. Obviously the increased security on the ground is already deterring every attempt. There is almost 1.5 decades of data supporting that theory. And with no terrorists coming on board, there is nothing those doors can protect against, right? Hence they are only a very bad idea that kills people. Including an TK Captain btw..... its not like GW and maybe MH370 where firsts...

Ground security isn't completely fool proof which is why you have defence in depth. Really, the hijacking list goes on even after 2001 just no new 9/11 scale events (the door being used helps prevent 9/11 scale events). (Your zero is totally false basically, you should really stop with the fake numbers)

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 30):
Again: attacking the hijackers is an attempt to save your live, deleting your key means committing suicide.

Your logic is about to self implode at this point, you say the hijackers say cooperate or I blow up the plane and you say the passengers attacking them would not end the plane exploding? (Both will save your life that is the point, if they have a bomb it is going to go off in either case so it is a moot point)

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 30):
i guess the smoking crater may also provide a good pointer or two. Are you trying to make a point with that statement? The CVR will contain the evidence that the hijackers wanted the aircraft for leverage. That they wanted to fly the aircraft into a building is a supposition on your part, hardly and hijackers ever wanted to do that. Hence we will see the same reversal of thinking as we see to day (No one should be able to enter the cockpit w/o cockpit consent vs. there has to be a way to get back in against their will).

Why exactly would any criminal investigation believe what the mass murderer says.

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 30):
Since the door is only relevant if terrorists with weapons get on board, and considering that terrorists with weapons can kill everyone on board independent of getting into the cockpit, the door provides pretty much no additional security for a enormous loss in safety.

Why would anyone open the door for a mass murder killing people in the back. No one in the back is going to let them into the cockpit because that just means everyone is going to die period. The door works even if the terrorists do not have weapons I don't see why it isn't relevant in that situation.
 
tomlee
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 9:36 pm

Quoting tommy1808 (Reply 31):
Oh, that is simple. A customer of mine makes a system that uses a camera signal to not just count people (reliable, it is certified for limited occupancy applications, so even with large groups), tell you the gender, age range and mood with a good hit rate as well. They even make software to identify intentions (will attempts to climb fence alert) with an acceptable false positive rate. Oh.. and identify people by how they walk with incredible low false positive and false negative values.

Computer vision systems are not by definition "reliable". Your system can be tricked with a simple piece of paper with a face on it. (Happy face, sad face, old man, young man)

Please link in this system your talking about it would be interesting to read it for myself.

'Video cameras used in computer-vision-based approaches, on the other hand, enable unobtrusive recovery of individuals' positions and trajectories. However, computer-vision-based approaches have difficulties with maintaining individuals' identities over longer periods of time; many modern multi-view approaches rely on identification by tracking, meaning that they propagate the identities along the track, with little or no appearance-based validation. This can lead to propagation of identity switches when individuals come close and then disperse again. This problem is even more evident in uniformed environments, such as sports or high-security facilities, where individuals become visually indistinguishable due to similar clothing."
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3574676/
Sensors (Basel). 2013; 13(1): 241–273.
Published online 2012 Dec 24. doi: 10.3390/s130100241

"Be warned though that since this is based on machine learning, the results will never be 100% accurate. You will get good enough results in most cases, but occasionally the algorithm will identify incorrect objects as faces."
https://realpython.com/blog/python/face-recognition-with-python/

(Deep learning which is just nested machine learning still doesn't achieve 100% accuracy) The occasional incorrect face means you can trick it with an intentionally designed picture. Handling occlusions, near passings, odd lighting, false detects, mistracks, ... would make you want to put motion tracking cameras into the cockpit with everyone wearing colored mo-cap suits. Markerless motion tracking is not trivial or very accurate.

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 32):
Well how do you think the flight crew will react while the cabin is being decimated? Human nature being what it is the door will eventually be opened to stop the bloodshed.

Once it becomes known the cabin crew can disable keycards the first thing any hijacker would do would be to kill/disable/take hostage all the cabin crew.

Your cardkey system sounds very complex to me with multiple erasable cards. Not to mention the signals necessary to activate or erase them. Hopefully it operates in flight safe mode

How exactly can they simultaneously kill/disable/take hostage the entire cabin crew before one person erases their key or the rest of the passengers fight back. Even then how do you force the poison pill pool information out of people when they can just lie and if they are dead/disabled you won't know.

Sounds complex while operating simply is the point, the signals necessary to activate them are very simple non-RF emitting it is just a block of encrypted SRAM (old school memory) with a tamper alarm to zeroise the key material. And by design it would be very flight safe as it transmits nothing into the RF and is a contact based system.

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 32):
It would need to be an imaging system in the flight deck, and all that needs is a couple of sensors to provide directional information. It's not difficult to track movement and so determine a human being is present and how many of them. You talked about turnstiles and beams, not me. Rather than fill the whole cabin with wireless signals have a passive detection system in the flightdeck.

The keycard system erase function only erases the key that they physically hold no wireless signals. Because the key is a pool of keys if people erase their individual keys the door is rendered secure without the need for a wireless or wired panic system.

Installing computer vision cameras to figure out how many people are in the cockpit doesn't really solve anything and has issues with false positive/negative detections which would render whatever is relying on the counts to be easily confused and failure prone. Face detection and motion analysis is easily tricked and works poorly in rapidly changing illumination conditions which can easily occur with a flight deck flying high above/below clouds or in the night/dark. Are we going to require high resolution thermal cameras in multiple positions in the cockpit just to count the people? (You might as well put that money towards using those expensive thermal cams and software to fly the plane instead) Compared to picking out humans reliably tracking the horizon or stars is a joke.

[Edited 2015-04-02 14:55:34]
 
hivue
Posts: 1903
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 10:39 pm

Quoting tomlee (Thread starter):
How do you design the door lock so that you can open it from the passenger cabin side without allowing terrorists the ability to do the same.

In what way(s) are the current designs defective in this regard? The GW FO was not a terrorist.

I know this thread is for new tech ideas for securing cockpit doors, but you need a proper definition of the goal to be achieved.
"You're sitting. In a chair. In the SKY!!" ~ Louis C.K.
 
tomlee
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Thu Apr 02, 2015 10:46 pm

Quoting hivue (Reply 35):
In what way(s) are the current designs defective in this regard? The GW FO was not a terrorist.

I know this thread is for new tech ideas for securing cockpit doors, but you need a proper definition of the goal to be achieved.

Top of the thread, (Not having a door fails instantly for example, and saying it isn't possible also not what this discussion is about) (The terrorist bit is for actual terrorist 9/11 scale events as the solution has to take into account previous events)

Quoting tomlee (Thread starter):
How do you design the door lock so that you can open it from the passenger cabin side without allowing terrorists the ability to do the same.

The current design doesn't allow for authorized users to open the door and allows malicious actors to abuse the anti-terrorism lockout. The terrorists provisions in the proposed design are to cover the existing 9/11 security logic so that it is still secure against terrorists in the passenger cabin while still letting the crew open the door when they need to.

The existing design has previously corrected defects as well otherwise we wouldn't be at phase 2 door design with the latest regulations from international regulators.
 
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kanban
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Fri Apr 03, 2015 1:25 am

Quoting tomlee (Reply 36):

every proposal mentioned has failure modes.. I can see the thread titles "Flight cancelled -no key to the cockpit available" or Flight Cancelled - computer would could not recognize F/O"

It's a heck of a lot of crap that takes the medical preparedness off the airlines plate.. just like too much automation has lead to sub standard training of crews..

Remember this is a one off situation.. and any change or suggestion of more tech is just knee jerk.
 
tomlee
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Fri Apr 03, 2015 1:47 am

Quoting kanban (Reply 37):
every proposal mentioned has failure modes.. I can see the thread titles "Flight cancelled -no key to the cockpit available" or Flight Cancelled - computer would could not recognize F/O"

If you somehow lost all the keys then you get blank replacements they are programmed by the door controller each time the plane flies you could have a whole box of them if you wanted to (if you really wanted to confuse a terrorist just jam your key card into the blank card box and spill the whole thing across the floor and say good luck finding it after erasing it of course). (That is one other feature of the system key management is trivial and keys are re-usable and common) The micro-controller (you really can't call it a full computer) writes a long number onto the key and reads it back to verify it is the same number. (with cryptography to protect the transaction from MITM)

Quoting kanban (Reply 37):
It's a heck of a lot of crap that takes the medical preparedness off the airlines plate.. just like too much automation has lead to sub standard training of crews..

Remember this is a one off situation.. and any change or suggestion of more tech is just knee jerk.


It isn't even an automated system it is literally just an electronic key card system which by design requires human interaction. It is cheaper and more secure than a standard physical key system or remembered pin and allows for better control logic for specific applications like this. Doing nothing amounts to an ostrich algorithm which is a horrible proposed solution and isn't even what this topic is about.

Electronic keyed systems are replacing physical locks and passwords because they are more flexible/cheaper/secure.
 
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kanban
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Fri Apr 03, 2015 3:42 am

Quoting tomlee (Reply 38):

How many years have we had commercial airplanes? how many years did we exist without all the so called security checks, gadgets, and foolishness thinking that some how we had a fool proof system.. so we have a pilot fly a 777 into the ground because he was letting the airplane fly itself, then we have a suicidal co-pilot fly into a mountain.. because we decided that the bloody door could only be opened from one side.. there also is the ridiculous notion that had someone been able to open the door the outcome would have been different.. that's la la land.

now you want to add more crap that can hacked, bypassed or fail just to feel safe?.. better yet stay at home, don't fly, don't ride a car or bus.. Life has risks and people die.. people with a purpose will find a way around any measure ..

the core issue here should be limited to why the co-pilot was flying at all, period. until you have resolved that all these mechanical/electrical/techno bells and whistles will still let authorized psychos in the cockpit.
 
tomlee
Topic Author
Posts: 610
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Fri Apr 03, 2015 4:08 am

Quoting kanban (Reply 39):
How many years have we had commercial airplanes

How many years have we had computers?

Quoting kanban (Reply 39):
how many years did we exist without all the so called security checks, gadgets, and foolishness thinking that some how we had a fool proof system

Humans rely on technology planes are just a large system of technologies, processes, people.

Security checks (security theatre) doesn't do anything to make planes safer but automatic aerodynamic protections and actual physical defences and various other technological and procedural improvements have made air plane travel safer over the years.

http://www.economist.com/blogs/graphicdetail/2014/03/daily-chart-6

So even if the fool proof system isn't perfect or even fool proof it is still getting better through design revisions and safety standard updates.

Quoting kanban (Reply 39):
so we have a pilot fly a 777 into the ground because he was letting the airplane fly itself, then we have a suicidal co-pilot fly into a mountain.. because we decided that the bloody door could only be opened from one side.. there also is the ridiculous notion that had someone been able to open the door the outcome would have been different.. that's la la land.

If the door did open for the captain the FO would likely be subdued well before the plane reached the mountain (~15 minutes). And that is what this proposal is addressing.

Quoting kanban (Reply 39):
now you want to add more crap that can hacked, bypassed or fail just to feel safe?.. better yet stay at home, don't fly, don't ride a car or bus.. Life has risks and people die.. people with a purpose will find a way around any measure ..

How exactly are you proposing you hack or bypass this system as this is a technical discussion of the design of said proposals. The door controller is a stand alone system with no connection to any other system and relies on standard AES-256 encryption with HMAC encoded messages to ensure the data in flight (which is literally between to contact points with no wireless tech being used) is protected even if there is a sniffing device. The keys change constantly so brute forcing the system would be made impractical. Offline attacks would not be possible as the keys constantly change and attempting to reverse engineer the keycard to extract just a single code from memory would both be mitigated by onboard encrypted storage and anti-tamper measures and even if you defeat that the keys already changed and the information is useless after all that effort.

The logic of were you say life has risks and people will always find a way around it fails instantly because your just asking people to give up and live with whatever they have and seek no change or improvement. Just because you can't make things perfect doesn't mean you shouldn't try to improve a clearly defective system so that an existing known and abused security hole doesn't remain.

Quoting kanban (Reply 39):
the core issue here should be limited to why the co-pilot was flying at all, period. until you have resolved that all these mechanical/electrical/techno bells and whistles will still let authorized psychos in the cockpit.

I think your in the wrong thread as this isn't for discussing mental health checks but how a door can be opened securely without allowing adversaries to abuse it. These solutions are not even mutually exclusive as a better door with better screening and better procedures would just make all causes/enablers to be greatly reduced.

[Edited 2015-04-02 21:28:55]
 
FoxHunter
Posts: 82
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Sun Apr 05, 2015 12:26 am

I must say the discussion of the locking of the cockpit door is entertaining. Sorry to ruin the discussion but the technology that makes the door secure was developed long, long ago. Not sure when it actually happened but I would guess sometime before 300BC. All the talk about the Keypad is just talk. The security of the door has nothing to do with anything electronic. Don't think they knew about electricity at 300BC.
 
tomlee
Topic Author
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Sun Apr 05, 2015 2:54 am

Quoting FoxHunter (Reply 41):

I must say the discussion of the locking of the cockpit door is entertaining. Sorry to ruin the discussion but the technology that makes the door secure was developed long, long ago. Not sure when it actually happened but I would guess sometime before 300BC. All the talk about the Keypad is just talk. The security of the door has nothing to do with anything electronic. Don't think they knew about electricity at 300BC.

Sorry the door is already electronic controlled, locked, latched, actuated, http://www.mtiinstruments.com/mtiuni...sity/appnotes/img/app-solenoid.gif (an ancient door dating back to 300BC belongs in a ruin or museum not a modern air-plane it would just be too heavy, brittle, weak)

Also technically everything has a ton of electrons even if no one discovered them yet. I highly doubt they had jet engines, computers, integrated circuits, single crystal superalloys, .... ( you know the things that make up a jet airplane)

You want to go back to those good old days of flying in 300BC because I don't think there would be a plane around you. (Gravity didn't need discovering to rapidly accelerate any free body down to the ground at around 9.81 m/s^2, sure no one knew of those units or the constant but it still did exist regardless of human knowledge at the time)

The technology that makes this type of door was not invented in 300BC. It is a derivative of the primative concept of a door but has undergone many revisions which qualify for patents (which requires novelty (new), useful (does something), innovative)

In any case it sounds like your suggesting 300BC ancient door technology has a solution but failed to specify which solution your talking about.

[Edited 2015-04-04 20:00:03]
 
FoxHunter
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Sun Apr 05, 2015 6:16 am

You are incorrect. Every door has a deadbolt. Once that is locked there is no way the door is going to be opened from the outside.
 
Mr AirNZ
Posts: 913
Joined: Sat Feb 02, 2002 10:24 am

RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Sun Apr 05, 2015 8:49 am

Quoting FoxHunter (Reply 43):
You are incorrect. Every door has a deadbolt. Once that is locked there is no way the door is going to be opened from the outside.

I've read hundreds of posts and waited patiently for someone to point that out. Thank you!
 
tomlee
Topic Author
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Sun Apr 05, 2015 2:23 pm

Quoting FoxHunter (Reply 43):
You are incorrect. Every door has a deadbolt. Once that is locked there is no way the door is going to be opened from the outside.

Backup deadbolts can have keys also unlike the electronic strikes it can't actually 3-point lock the door and could easily be rammed open the door isn't rated to use just the deadbolt and still provide the same structural rating. Also it is simple just remove the manual deadbolt how is a terrorist going to cut the power to the plane just to unlock the door.

The safety regulators are already looking into the lock mechanism so say bye bye to the crappy 300BC design.
 
FoxHunter
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Sun Apr 05, 2015 3:32 pm

Sorry, It is not a back up dead bolt. How much real life experience do you have with these doors? I retired as a Captain at the end of September 2012 . I spent a little over 43 years as an airline pilot, a little less than 16 years as a F/O, and a little over 27 years as a Captain. The last 7.5 years as a FFDO. It just appears you speak with great authority, but with very little real knowledge. There a no keys on aircraft.

The door is designed with electronics to allow a pilot sitting in his assigned station to open the lock to permit the person outside the cockpit to open the door and come in. Think of it as the door bell on your front door. The person outside rings the door bell and the pilot in the cockpit can take the lock off or decide to deny entry. If for some reason the pilot inside the cockpit does not open the door with normal door bell code the person outside can use the emergency code. This action causes a loud aural alert in the cockpit. If the pilot in the cockpit does not deny entry the door unlocks after 30 seconds.

In the case of the Germanair flight my guess is the F/O engaged the deadbolt after the Captain left the cockpit. He may have also disarmed the electronic door lock system .
 
Backseater
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Sun Apr 05, 2015 6:52 pm

Quoting FoxHunter (Reply 46):
In the case of the Germanair flight my guess is the F/O engaged the deadbolt after the Captain left the cockpit. He may have also disarmed the electronic door lock system .

Do I understand correctly that all secure cockpit doors have a manual deadbolt that can only be closed/opened from the cockpit side?
Is there a sensor confirming that the deadbolt is closed?
If there is a sensor, is its status recorded on the FDR?

How is the electronic door lock system disarmed? Circuit breaker? Where?
 
FoxHunter
Posts: 82
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Sun Apr 05, 2015 8:13 pm

I don't think any door could get certified without a manual deadbolt.
Do you need a sensor to tell you the deadbolt on the front door of your house worked? You can hear it and feel it when you close it. I've never had, or ever heard of any problem with the deadbolt.
I have no idea if there is any sensor that reports it's status to the FDR. Very few secrets on the modern airplane but not sure if this is reported.

There is a switch inside the cockpit that disarms the door.

BTW every cockpit door I'm aware of opens away from the cockpit, outward so it could never be battered down.
 
tomlee
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RE: Secure Cockpit Door Unlock Design

Sun Apr 05, 2015 8:47 pm

Quoting FoxHunter (Reply 46):
Sorry, It is not a back up dead bolt. How much real life experience do you have with these doors? I retired as a Captain at the end of September 2012 . I spent a little over 43 years as an airline pilot, a little less than 16 years as a F/O, and a little over 27 years as a Captain. The last 7.5 years as a FFDO. It just appears you speak with great authority, but with very little real knowledge. There a no keys on aircraft.

"A deadbolt is installed at the level of the center latch area of the cockpit door. This deadbolt bolts the
door from the cockpit side, in the event that more than one locking latch strike fails, or in the case of
a total CLS failure." A320 FCOM. (it is a backup in case the electronic door latching system fails)

It only locks at one point unlike the three point strike the electronic system uses and would be much more vulnerable to ramming. It is called a backup deadbolt because that is what it is a backup your not supposed to use it in normal operation as if there is a double incapacitation incident there would be no way to open the door. The existing electronic door lock does allow for this scenario to work but if you break procedure and always lock the backup deadbolt your going to create a safety hazard in contravention of the flight procedures.

There is no real need for this backup lock as if the plane loses power and a terrorist takes over they probably aren't going anywhere but into the ground.

Notice the "can have" keys. We are talking about future door designs here.'

Quoting FoxHunter (Reply 46):
The door is designed with electronics to allow a pilot sitting in his assigned station to open the lock to permit the person outside the cockpit to open the door and come in. Think of it as the door bell on your front door. The person outside rings the door bell and the pilot in the cockpit can take the lock off or decide to deny entry. If for some reason the pilot inside the cockpit does not open the door with normal door bell code the person outside can use the emergency code. This action causes a loud aural alert in the cockpit. If the pilot in the cockpit does not deny entry the door unlocks after 30 seconds.

In the case of the Germanair flight my guess is the F/O engaged the deadbolt after the Captain left the cockpit. He may have also disarmed the electronic door lock system .

I don't think he used the backup deadbolt otherwise the CVR would have the audio of him using the mechanical latch he just used the lock command. The deadbolt wasn't even needed and has very little purpose.

Quoting FoxHunter (Reply 48):
I don't think any door could get certified without a manual deadbolt.
Do you need a sensor to tell you the deadbolt on the front door of your house worked? You can hear it and feel it when you close it. I've never had, or ever heard of any problem with the deadbolt.
I have no idea if there is any sensor that reports it's status to the FDR. Very few secrets on the modern airplane but not sure if this is reported.

Just because you don't think it will get certified doesn't mean they won't cut it out. Do you need a sensor on the exterior doors a plane (yes). Should a flight data recorder keep track of the door open/closed/locked/deadbolted condition, yes.

Quoting FoxHunter (Reply 48):
BTW every cockpit door I'm aware of opens away from the cockpit, outward so it could never be battered down.

Really I guess you've never flown this major mfg's planes. I think there are cockpit doors which open inward.

http://youtu.be/ixEHV7c3VXs?t=5m9s

Its also at the top of the thread for a general overview,

Quoting tomlee (Thread starter):
Airbus instructional video, https://youtu.be/ixEHV7c3VXs

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