Fire alarm on Earth delays Northrop Grumman cargo launch to space station

For the course project, my team is focusing on potential cyber threats against the automated flight termination system capable of causing launch delays. The linked article discusses a similar incident in which a fire alarm at the launch controller facility was pulled 10 minutes before launch causing the mission to be scrubbed. For a mission to the ISS, this isn’t a big issue as there are no shortage of ample launch windows. Interplanetary missions however could be greatly delayed by an intentional attack like this. An interesting piece of this is that the capabilities of one facility were directly impacted by the security state of another facility. The incident perfectly highlights the principle that a threat actor will attack the weakest link in a security system. If this was indeed due to threat actor activity, they were able to scrub a mission by attacking the lowered security of a separate facility. For bigger mission, the risk of an attack like this is increased due to the number of agencies and locations involved in a launch, if even one of the critical groups is affected prior to launch, it could potentially cost the entire mission through missed deadlines and launch windows.