European Data Protection Digest

As Drone Market Grows, So Do Concerns

SURVEILLANCE—EU & U.S.

February 14, 2013

The Irish Times reports on the increasing growth of the drone market in Europe, which is drawing the ire of privacy advocates, civil liberties groups and legislators who fear the drones may be misused for surveillance purposes. Of particular concern is the length of time drones can stay airborne combined with the high-quality cameras, infrared imaging and facial recognition cameras that can be mounted on drones to potentially track individuals. A spokesman from UK-based civil liberties organisation Statewatch said the European Commission is being “somewhat duplicitous” in its approach on privacy, focusing more on data protection. Meanwhile, in the U.S., a plan by Seattle, WA, police to use drones equipped with spy cameras has been halted following privacy concerns.
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