French Police Drones Banned over Privacy Concerns.
French Police Drones Banned over Privacy Concerns. A powerful life saving tool or a threat to civil liberties?
French judges banned the use of surveillance drones by police to monitor public compliance with coronavirus-related restrictions, citing privacy issues.
The authorities’ use of drones to contain the spread of Covid-19 “constitutes a serious and manifestly unlawful infringement of privacy rights,” the court said on Monday.
The Complaint Against Drone Use
The Paris-based Conseil d’Etat ruled that drones with cameras can no longer be used until the concerns are addressed. It needs a privacy-friendly law or by equipping the drones with technology that makes it impossible to identify Individuals.
Civil liberties groups La Quadrature du Net and the Human Rights League initiated the legal battle. They claimed people were being filmed without their knowledge, and with no limits on how long footage could be kept.
“Drones surveillance is suspended,”police said, adding“the technical and legal conditions to respond to requirements” set by the court.
DJI Mavic Enterprise Units
The rule comas at a bad time. The French police had just launched its biggest ever procurement program for more than 650 small drones.
The Conseil d’Etat ruling on Monday will impact this plan. France currently has no legal framework for the use of surveillance drones.
The court ruling demands the state to have one, and have it checked by an independent privacy watchdog.
Front runners on the shopping list, and already being tested by the French police was the DJI Mavic Enterprise system. This versatile public order tool based on the popular Mavic 2 pro flight platform loved by thousands of drone flyers.
Along with the impressive flight time, portability and quick deployment. Modular attachments such as Loud speaker, Beacon and spot-light can be added.
Recent US patent infringement case brought by Autel Robotics against DJI will hamper sales to government agencies in the future.
Future of Drones
The French case has once again highlighted how out of step legislation is with drone technology is.
What could be an effective tool for public safety and saving public money through manpower savings, is hampered by out of touch privacy laws.
The country’s decision may be looked at closely elsewhere in Europe, where the use of surveillance drones has also increased.
Spain and Belgium have used drones to monitor the public’s behavior amid virus lockdown rules.
German police tested them in Dortmund and Dusseldorf across parks to assess the need for a police presence.
For most of us, we have grown up with the ever present CCTV on our streets, are drones as step too far? If nothing to hide, the how can it be?
But if you are concerned? Consider this.. something far more intrusive is lurking in your pocket or bag. You could be using it right now to read this. Ironic that privacy advocate groups use it so much.
Time to stock up on DJI Mavic Props? Read more HERE.