The US aircraft maker Boeing has patented a system that would use broadband satellite connections, now being installed on airliners to provide passengers with internet access.

Its patent suggests hiding tiny microchip-based cameras and microphones around the cockpit and passenger cabin, the British weekly New Scientist reports in next Saturday’s issue.

In a hijack, a crewmember would discreetly press a button that orders the broadband connection to start transmitting whatever images and sound the cameras and microphones are capturing to controllers on the ground.

The controllers can then monitor what the hijackers are doing and saying, which would be a boon for responding to the crisis.

More here.