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I was reading another question on this site when I saw this answer.

As you can see in the photo I copied below, this private jet has no cockpit door. On commercial aircraft the bullet-proof cockpit door is seen as the last line of defense against would-be hijackers.

What security measures are in place to prevent unauthorized passenger access to the controls of private jets? Even though they are smaller and carry fewer people, a G650 or BBJ pointed in the wrong place can do a lot of damage.

Private jet

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    $\begingroup$ The same thing that prevents someone from hijacking a bus: Nothing. (or, possibly, morals if you want to get into a philosophical discussion) $\endgroup$ – falstro Jun 15 '15 at 19:51
  • $\begingroup$ So why are the doors on commercial aircraft bullet-proof? $\endgroup$ – collector Jun 15 '15 at 20:03
  • $\begingroup$ This is very close to being a duplicate of this question $\endgroup$ – Pondlife Jun 15 '15 at 20:41
  • $\begingroup$ @Pondlife I had seen that question. I feel that that question relates to the pre-boarding security. While my question explicitly deals with onboard security. I find it to be more of a duplicate of this questionBut I feel that question is asking if you can charter and fly a plane yourself from the start. While I'm asking about inflight hijacking from a passenger. I'll delete people feel this is a duplicate. $\endgroup$ – collector Jun 15 '15 at 20:51
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    $\begingroup$ @Blam You are right, this is getting out of hand. I have done the same. $\endgroup$ – collector Jun 23 '15 at 21:03
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The same thing that prevents the passengers in your car from hijacking it and using it to run people down or drive it through a mall: It's your private car and you generally know the people that you let in to it.

The same applies to private aircraft.

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    $\begingroup$ I would say it's easier to do more damage with a normal jet than a normal car, given you don't care whether you'll see the next sunrise. $\endgroup$ – collector Jun 16 '15 at 19:54
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    $\begingroup$ @collector While that may or may not be true (private individuals may own all kinds of destructive things, including heavy machinery, monster trucks, and even tanks), in practice this is how it works and how the laws are written. The PIC is responsible for the safety of the aircraft and those on board. $\endgroup$ – Lnafziger Jun 16 '15 at 22:30
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    $\begingroup$ Just to bring things into perspective: Strategically impacting three BBJs (or G650s) into a cruise ship (Allure of the Seas) can cause a lot of damage. I doubt you can do this much damage with a herd of monster trucks. $\endgroup$ – collector Jun 23 '15 at 20:11
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    $\begingroup$ @collector The Oklahoma City Bombing is but one example of what you can do with one box truck.... People can turn all manner of things into extremely destructive objects. $\endgroup$ – Lnafziger Jun 23 '15 at 21:45
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    $\begingroup$ @collector Also, there are more regulations that govern bigger airplanes such as an airbus that is being privately operated. It's more about the size (actually weight) of the aircraft than how it is being operated. $\endgroup$ – Lnafziger Aug 19 '15 at 17:50
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What security measures are in place to prevent unauthorized passenger access to the controls of private jets?

None. The passengers outnumber the pilots, and unlike commercial jets are not outnumbered by passengers who prefer the original scheduled route to the new one.

It would also be very easy to arrange pickup at a quiet airstrip, kill the crew, stuff the bodies in a car trunk and do the whole flight without them.

The reason this isn't much of a concern is because small jets have neither the mass nor fuel capacity to do anywhere near the amount of damage possible with an airliner. As an example, when I was in college a light aircraft hit a building on approach to the airport, and nobody noticed. The building was the city hospital, the plane struck an empty floor and sat there with the tail sticking out. ATC wondered where it went, asked the next inbound to have a look, and then phoned the building. Staff went to the appropriate room and extracted the injured (but not dead) pilot and passengers.

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    $\begingroup$ Wow, do you have a link to the NTSB report for that accident? $\endgroup$ – pericynthion Jun 16 '15 at 4:33
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    $\begingroup$ A 737 BBJ is roughly the same size as a commercial 737. And it has additional fuel tanks. $\endgroup$ – collector Jun 16 '15 at 19:56
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    $\begingroup$ @pericynthion Could be this report from a newspaper $\endgroup$ – collector Jun 16 '15 at 20:18
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    $\begingroup$ @collector that's a 3rd-party reprinting (Eugene OR is 1300km from Edmonton) , but yes it is the event I described. Maybe the Edmonton Journal hasn't scanned it's archives. $\endgroup$ – paul Jun 17 '15 at 1:26
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    $\begingroup$ They crashed into the right place... $\endgroup$ – Sean Apr 1 '18 at 23:07
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In your picture, the door is currently open. It is most definitely there, but probably not re-enforced as commercial airline doors are.

Very little physically prevents a passenger from entering the cockpit on a private charter.

Generally, with private planes, security is done on the ground. The charter company does whatever diligence they feel is necessary to know their guests and their intentions before boarding.

Commercial airlines obviously cannot do extensive checks on all their passengers, but they do cross-check against lists like the No-Fly list.

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    $\begingroup$ In the other answer linked in the question (where I got the picture), a pilot who flies this type of plane says that there is, in fact, no door. $\endgroup$ – collector Jun 15 '15 at 17:27
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    $\begingroup$ Why are you discussing a charter company in a question about private jets? ;-) $\endgroup$ – Lnafziger Jun 16 '15 at 18:34
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    $\begingroup$ @collector Some do and some don't. Some of them it's a curtain, some are wood, but they aren't normally reinforced like what is required of an airliner. $\endgroup$ – Lnafziger Jun 16 '15 at 18:35
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The difference in security measures is due to the difference in the passengers.

Commercial airlines could carry almost anyone as passengers. Although some amount of security is done on the ground, and in the air, a cockpit door is still a useful line of defense. It's difficult to verify the intentions or capabilities of everyone that will ever be a passenger on the plane. Also, aside from limited circumstances, there is no reason for anyone from the cabin to be accessing the cockpit.

Private jets are different, because they are just that; private. A business or individual has the responsibility to clear their passengers before a flight. If they feel that there may be an issue, they can certainly have a cockpit door. But that situation is not normal. On a private jet, the passengers may comprise of the owner and his or her guests. As a matter of courtesy they may want to visit the cockpit. On a business flight, the circumstances would be similar.

As paul pointed out, these planes typically don't have the range or size to be capable of the same things an airliner would be. And the larger the plane, the larger the price tag. This would cost much more than just a commercial ticket, which also serves as a form of security.

Large jets will also have additional security added: What are the security measures preventing someone from chartering a 747 and using it to commit a terrorist attack?

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While secured cockpit doors are not required on chartered or corporate aircraft, they do have a few security measures which are the same as those found on airliners to deter criminal activity or hijacking by passengers aboard the aircraft:

Security screenings: Large aviation charter companies will subject travelers to TSA screening’s, involving metal detectors and x-ray luggage that they carry board.

Higher class clientele: Travelers a board private jets and charted aircraft generally are wealthy individuals, or well-connected ones usually are not up for causing that kind of major crime aboard an aircraft.

Traveler reputation amongst charter companies: as mentioned earlier large scale criminal activity by most private jet flyers is rare, but there can be cases of obnoxious passengers being rude or abusive with the flight crews and causing minor property damage. This is particularly troublesome with celebrities, musicians, professional athletes, etc. That kind of antisocial behavior will be quickly curbed as such people develop a reputation amongst flight crews and charter companies, as they have quite long and vivid memories. The bottom line is if you don’t want to travel by car, bus, or amongst other “little people” on an airliner, be kind to your flight crews and they’ll be kind to you.

The fear of the Law: Causing trouble aboard an aircraft or anything that could be interpreted as a violation of FAR 91.13 can carry sentences of up to 10 years in prison, and fines as great as $250,000. Aircraft hijacking is a capital offense under the US code.

Flight crews pack heat: Yes some of them are armed with guns and will shoot you if they believe you are an immediate threat to the aircraft or other passengers.

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To prevent business jet or charter flight hijacking from private jet terminal or Fixed Base Operator (FBO) are very difficult because

  1. Passengers are company valuable passengers or millionaire. So the intention to hijack or suicide is quite low except mental disorder.- Detection by observe the Suspicious behaviors of Passengers.
  2. Prevention can be done only on-ground because normally private jets have no cockpit door and operate with 2 pilots. If access control to airside is less strict. Prohibited articles, weapons, narcotic etc. can be smuggled by private jets.- Detection is strict control to airside by random and unpredictable security measures as per Annex 17 - 9th edition.
  3. Risk assessment and intelligence are the key.
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