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  • Ships sailing through the Strait of Hormuz and the Persian Gulf have been experiencing GPS interference and various other problems that US officials suspect is the work of the Iranians, CNN reported Wednesday.
  • According to US Central Command and the Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration, ships have reported GPS interference, bridge-to-bridge communications spoofing, and jamming, among other problems.
  • A US defense official told CNN that the Iranians had jammers aimed at disrupting the GPS navigation systems on ships and aircraft so that they might wander into Iranian waters or airspace, justifying a seizure.
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Ships passing through the Strait of Hormuz and the Persian Gulf have reported unusual GPS interference, among other problems, and the US believes Iran is to blame.

The Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration issued a warning on Wednesday about threats to commercial vessels posed by Iran, saying that ships operating in the region could have a variety of issues, including “spoofed bridge-to-bridge communications from unknown entities falsely claiming to be US or coalition warships.”

At least two incidents were said to involve GPS interference, it said.

“Due to the heightened regional tensions, the potential for miscalculation or misidentification could lead to aggressive actions against vessels belonging to US, allied, and coalition partners operating in the Arabian Gulf, Strait of Hormuz, and Gulf of Oman,” US Central Command, which oversees American military operations in the Middle East, said in an emailed statement.

It added that ships had reported experiencing “GPS interference, bridge-to-bridge communications spoofing, and/or other communications jamming with little to no warning.”

In some cases, a US defense official told CNN, Iranian navy and Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps vessels have spoofed merchant ships’ automatic identification system to make themselves look like commercial shipping vessels. Read more

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