Posted by Charlotte Ebbutt, Associate
“Is assault by drone now an inevitability?”
It is a surprise to many that we have not seen a proliferation of drone based assaults already. Drones potentially offer surprise, lethality and stand-off – all in a relatively straightforward ‘off-the shelf’ available form that can be difficult to trace forensically and which has a limited risk for the “pilot”.
The threat posed is an evolving one where only one side will be paying by the rules. In that context the pace of research and development in funding countermeasures, where resources are tight, must be driven by the reality of the evolving threat. The recent new UK legislation governing all drone sales and their use does not seem to have provided the authorities with any better means to assist in forensically tracking any platforms used for illicit purposes.
Clearly, in Venezuela, any countermeasures were defeated, avoided or insufficient. So what can we expect to see as the first line of defence for outdoor events of this kind in the future? We may well see a tailored and targeted increase in the introduction of physical countermeasures to track and defeat drones entering an area (which poses a whole series of second order challenges and potential consequences) as a prelude to the introduction of effective electronic countermeasures and tracking processes.
Whatever the position, it is inevitable that the issue of defeating such attacks will now be high on the security agenda. Time will tell whether this is the catalyst for a more robust form of regulation and control of drone use as well as a significant acceleration of the introduction and use of measures to combat the threat that drones present to political and other high profile targets.
If you have an enquiry regarding legal advice for the commercial use of drones, please contact Philip Banks-Welsh on:
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