By Divya Jun 21, 2024

GPS Spoofing Disrupts Food Delivery, Navigation in Cyprus

In an alarming development, the use of GPS spoofing in the Middle East has taken a toll on food delivery and navigation apps in Cyprus. The issue has left residents puzzled as their devices display incorrect locations, attributing them to faraway places like Beirut, Lebanon.

A Culinary Conundrum

On a recent Sunday evening, Paris Thomas faced an unexpected obstacle when ordering takeout from his local Thai restaurant. The estimated delivery time was an astonishing three and a half hours. To his surprise, the culprit wasn’t traffic or kitchen delays but a GPS spoofing signal that tricked his phone into believing he was in Beirut.

“I guess if you account for a private jet to fly to Lebanon, this is pretty accurate,” joked Thomas. “The restaurant called us laughing, and we sorted it out. They’re used to it by now.”

Navigational Confusion

Beyond food delivery, the spoofing has significantly impacted navigation devices for ships and airplanes around Cyprus. Pilots and ship captains have reported receiving false location data, leading to confusion and potential safety concerns.

Charlie Day, a marketing consultant, has experienced social media campaigns intended for Cyprus landing in Lebanon, while Google Maps routes frequently include a 22-hour detour via Turkey. “It doesn’t seem to be a blip; it seems to be an ongoing thing,” said Day.

The Perpetrator: Drone Disruption

Experts believe the GPS spoofing is a deliberate attempt to disrupt navigation systems used by drones and missiles, particularly in the ongoing conflict between Hamas militants and Israel. The signals are likely coming from Israel, targeting the Beirut airport to deactivate internal geofences on drones that prevent them from flying near airports.

“They’re also used to generally disrupt and jam communications in a combat area,” said Freddy Khoueiry, a global security analyst.

Consequences for the Economy

The economic impact of the GPS spoofing remains unclear, but it highlights the importance of satellite navigation to the global economy. A 2019 study estimated that a GPS outage in the United States alone would cost $1 billion a day.

Advice for Residents

In the meantime, residents of Cyprus have adapted to the disruption by double-checking their locations and relying less on GPS-dependent apps and devices.

“I asked if she wants to have some Lebanese shawarma while we are at it,” quipped Thomas, referring to his wife’s Find My Friends app showing her in Beirut.


The GPS spoofing in Cyprus serves as a stark reminder of the vulnerability of global navigation systems. As technology advances, so does the potential for disruption and interference. Governments and individuals alike must be vigilant in addressing these challenges to ensure the safety and reliability of our digital infrastructure.

By Divya

Related Post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *