Airplane cockpit doors have access codes now for a reason. It’s to prevent unauthorized persons from entering the cockpit and possibly putting the passengers at risk. So you can imagine that it would be a pretty big deal if those codes got out. United pilots were alerted recently that access codes to cockpit doors had been accidentally posted online by a flight attendant.

The Wall Street Journal reports that United Continental Holdings, which owns United Airlines and United Express, told pilots to follow existing security procedures that include visually confirming a person’s identity before allowing them access to the flight deck even if they’ve entered the correct access code.

There’s not much cause for concern, though, as this wasn’t due to a hack or a cyberattack. It was entirely down to human error. However, it does show that cockpits remain vulnerable despite all of the safety procedures currently in place.

The Air Line Pilots Association represents more than 55,000 pilots in the United States and Canada. It told the Wall Street Journal yesterday that the problem has been fixed so those leaked cockpit door access codes are not something that passengers should be worried about now.

The Association has previously called on airlines for additional safety measures that include installing steel cables on cockpit doors to make it harder to break into the flight deck but airlines have been adamant that this isn’t something that’s necessary right now.

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