Despite the worries, however, security experts agree that hackers are unlikely to be able to bring down a plane at the moment – although it could be possible in the future as cybercriminals get more advanced.
"In the longer term it is something regulators will be aware of when connecting more and more systems," Alastair Paterson, CEO of cybersecurity firm Digital Shadows, told CNBC in a phone interview.
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"I think there is a risk that hackers become more sophisticated in the attacks they can perform, but I don't think there is capability yet to bring down a plane."
'Trillions of dollars'
Cyber-espionage – where countries or companies look to steal information from rivals – is another pressing concern faced by the aviation sector.
The threat is "huge", according to Hawkins, who said not only would intellectual property of aviation companies be at risk, but it could have a massive impact on a country's economy.
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"The damage could be in the trillions of dollars, with either countries or other companies penetrating networks to get information. It would be a huge drain on the economy," he said.
The issue has been thrust into the spotlight following the revelations of ex-NSA employee Edward Snowden on the level of covert online monitoring by the U.S. online