Gogo Business Aviation Airborne Security Summary

SECURE AIRBORNE CONNECTIVITY: OVERVIEW

Gogo Business Aviation realizes the ever-pressing need to be vigilant in staying ahead of potential threats to the security of airborne connectivity. Since our beginning, we have been proactive in designing and building security into our products, networks and services. Whether through our own standards or in partnership with the FAA and other aviation stakeholders, Gogo seeks to lead in defining and implementing best practices for airborne cybersecurity. Gogo leverages state-of-the-art enterprise networking designs to provide comprehensive security for its network and inflight connections. These designs are continuously monitored and analyzed for potential security risks, and also to ensure system robustness. We strive for constant awareness and understanding of the latest innovations in secure network design. Gogo’s Network Operations Center (NOC) provides continuous monitoring and troubleshooting of our broadband network, enabling us to quickly identify, detect, respond to and recover from potential cybersecurity threats.  

Figure: Secure links within the Gogo airborne connectivity network



 

SECURE NETWORK DESIGN: DETAILS

Gogo Business Aviation follows a thorough process to design and build security into its products, networks and services from the ground up. The following information details how Gogo provides secure airborne connections 24/7/365 through its ATG (air to ground) network communications, onboard aircraft equipment configurations and the Gogo NOC.

GOGO BIZ AIR-TO-GROUND (ATG) NETWORK COMMUNICATIONS:

Gogo secures all communications transferred on its Gogo Biz ATG network. This includes any data transferred between the aircraft, network ground stations and the Gogo Data Center. All data transfers over the airborne network are secured through licensed spectrum with proprietary link layer encapsulation for secure air-to-ground communications. The Gogo Biz network adheres to up-to-date, state-of-the-art enterprise networking design:

  • Sound network design with Linux firewall protection.
  • Terrestrial network with two stateful firewalls, plus security measures (network address port translation and radio network IP concealment).
  • Utilizes multiple data centers for redundancy and failover, and resiliency in the face of cyber threats or natural disasters.

 

ONBOARD AIRCRAFT EQUIPMENT:

Gogo secures all onboard aircraft equipment that is manufactured and delivered as part of the Gogo Business Aviation inflight connectivity system. By design, Gogo onboard aircraft equipment is secured through isolation, which includes:

  • Open 802.11 and secure 802.11 Wi-Fi/wireless via WPA2.
  • Aircraft system intrusion security is provided by the Gogo-supplied router.
  • Other airborne system components are inaccessible from the Wi-Fi clients due to network isolation.

 

GOGO NETWORK OPERATIONS CENTER (NOC):  

The Gogo Network Operations Center (NOC) provides Tier 1 & Tier 2 monitoring and troubleshooting of all elements of the Gogo Business Aviation mobile broadband network. Located in Chicago, Illinois, the NOC provides continuous operations support.
The NOC staff consists of data systems, wireless and IP support analysts. Security is assured through industry-grade secured networking between the access-controlled NOC and the secured Gogo Data Center.
 

GOGO CYBERSECURITY BEST PRACTICES

Gogo Business Aviation adheres to the following best practices to ensure security at all stages in design and development of its network, products and processes. This is not intended to be a comprehensive list of all activities performed by Gogo’s cybersecurity personnel.

MONTHLY SYSTEM VULNERABILITY ASSESSMENTS Independent third party security firms perform monthly external and internal assessments against Gogo’s assets. Results of these assessments are reviewed and any noted deficiencies are tracked and remediated.
 
ROUTINE PENETRATION TESTS AND FIREWALL ANALYSIS Independent third party security firms perform routine external and internal penetration tests against Gogo’s assets. Results of these penetration tests are reviewed and any noted deficiencies are tracked and remediated.
 
MONTHLY FIREWALL AUDITS Security audits are performed monthly against all production firewalls. Both a manual review process and automated toolsets are utilized to ensure configurations are secure. Online backups of firewall configurations are maintained to make sure a rapid rollback can be performed successfully if there are any issues identified.
 
GENERAL SECURITY AWARENESS TRAINING Both full time employees and contractors are required to attend security awareness training within 30 days of their hire date and again at least annually.
 
SECURE CODING AWARENESS TRAINING Both full time employees and contractors who are members of the application development departments are required to attend annual awareness training focused on secure coding standards and best practices.
 
FAA CYBERSECURITY Gogo works closely with the FAA and other aviation stakeholders to define new cybersecurity standards to anticipate and protect against current and future cyber threats.Gogo’s certification process follows the latest FAA and RTCA policies to ensure safety of flight for Gogo-equipped aircraft.
 
COMPLIANCE CERTIFICATIONS Gogo is PCI:DSS Level 1 Certified and in the process of renewing an ISO 27001:2013 certification for Gogo’s credit card processing environment. Copies of these certificates are available upon request.
 
SECURITY POLICIES Cybersecurity policies are maintained and updated on an internal corporate site which is accessible to all employees and contractors. The policies, standards, and configuration guide are based on requirements sourced from the NIST CSF and ISO 27001:2016 frameworks.
 
EVENT LOG MONITORS Gogo utilizes a trusted third-party security firm’s Security Operations Center (SOC) to monitor production system event logs 24/7/365. Any anomalies are reported immediately and thoroughly investigated.
 
ENDPOINT SECURITY All Gogo employee workstations are encrypted and have updated anti-virus, anti-malware, intrusion prevention and firewall technology installed.
 
PRIVILEGED USER ACCESS REVIEWS Ongoing user access reviews are performed against production systems. Business stakeholders verify appropriate access levels for identified users.
 
CYBERSECURITY STEERING COMMITTEE Ongoing meetings of key business stakeholders ensure security is addressed from various departments of the organization. Updates are provided to key business stakeholders from the Cybersecurity team and takeaways are implemented based on the criticality of the information provided.
 
RISK ASSESSMENTS Ongoing risk assessments ensure new risks to Gogo are quickly identified and remediation efforts are prioritized and implemented.
 
 


Save a copy of this whitepaper for later reading.
Download now

Related content