Wireless Feature Disabled On Pacemaker To Stop Hackers From Assassinating Cheney

Staff Writer | Network World | October 21, 2013

To eliminate the chance of Dick Cheney's heart being hacked, doctors disabled the wireless functionality on his implanted defibrillator.

It would be a safe bet to guess that former Vice President Dick Cheney agreed to be interviewed by Dr. Sanjay Gupta on CBS's "60 Minutes" in order to help sell his new book, Heart, but some of the details from, and comments on, that interview are worth repeating. According to CBS, "He has been the beneficiary of nearly every medical breakthrough to combat heart disease over the last 35 years, including a heart transplant at the age of 71." Or, to quote commenter senatorjefferygold, "To say Dick Cheney's original heart was defective is an understatement; it was the heart of Satan. Now he has an actual human heart."

When Cheney's implanted defibrillator was replaced in 2007, his cardiologist was worried someone would hack it and kill him. So he "ordered the manufacturer to disable the wireless feature - fearing a terrorist could assassinate the vice president by sending a signal to the device, telling it to shock his heart into cardiac arrest." Dr. Jonathan Reiner stated, "It seemed to me to be a bad idea for the vice president to have a device that maybe somebody on a rope line or in the next hotel room or downstairs might be able to get into — hack into."