Delivery Drones May Be Grounded by Privacy, Security Concerns


Commercial drone delivery promises to be the future of getting packages to consumers in the most efficient manner possible. But, privacy and security concerns may be holding back more widespread adoption of the technology. 

This hasn’t stopped some companies from moving forward. Inc. will deliver packages right to a front door, given the consumer lives within 10 miles of a fulfillment center, and Domino’s Pizza Inc. has tested the delivery method in New Zealand. 

According to a recent report by nonprofit group the Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA), drone privacy and security issues are the most alarming to business. Among survey respondents, 75 percent say privacy is the largest concern for commercial drone use. Interestingly enough, 25 percent of companies say that business use of drones outweighs any privacy or security issue. The report polled ISACA members which include “more than 140,000 members and certification holders in 187 countries,” the group said.

"Rushing to implement drone technology without first being properly prepared can result in both a legal and financial disaster. An uncontrolled drone program can also cause significant damage to the organization's reputation," Albert Marcella, author of the report and member of ISACA, said in a statement. 

Attorneys and industry specialists have also turned their eyes to drone privacy issues. Despite growing acceptance of drones, privacy and security concerns remain, Lisa Ellman, Washington-based partner at Hogan Lovells LLP and chair of the firm’s unmanned aircraft systems practice, told Bloomberg BNA Privacy & Security Senior Legal Editor Jimmy H. Koo in a video interview. However, there are laws and rules in place that protect consumers’ privacy and security, Ellman said. The private-sector should also work with public-sector stakeholders to help abate the privacy and security issues, Ellman said. 

And consumers worried about drones invading their privacy or subverting security protocols should consult with France. The country has trained eagles—D’Artagnan, Athos, Porthos and Aramis--which seek to destroy rogue unmanned aircraft that pose a national security risks, French radio station RFI reported. All for one and one for taking down rogue drones.

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