TrackingPoint Sniper Rifles Hack Proves Deadly Side To Smart Weapons

The world of connected weapons just got a little darker.

In an experiment for Wired, security researchers Runa Sandvik and Michael Auger hacked a TrackingPoint sniper rifle using its Wi-Fi connection.

What's more worrying is the extent to which they were able to take control of the weapon. Using a nearby laptop, they were able to gain access to the rifle's video stream, change the weight of the bullet and fool the rifle into shooting the wrong target.

The $13,000 (£8320) TrackingPoint weapon, is well known for its ability to make target-shooting easy for the most amateur of marksmen as it automatically adjusts aim according to bullet weight, temperature and distance.

“You can make it lie constantly to the user so they’ll always miss their shot,” Sandvik told Wired.

“If the scope is bricked, you have a six to seven thousand dollar computer you can’t use on top of a rifle that you still have to aim yourself.”

However, the researchers do point out that the Wi-Fi range will most likely limit the hackers' capabilities.

They will be presenting their research at the Black Hat conference in Las Vegas in August.