How Will You Protect Your Business From the Next Invasion? by Joe Elkins

In a recent news release by Yahoo,, I have questions concerning any possible or pending restrictions on use of drones by private citizens and against private citizens. Particularly of concern would be a new era of corporate espionage. Spying on the competition and stealing of ideas, products, campaigns, etc.

I am not one to expect that anyone would want to spy on me. However, I still value my personal privacy and having a drone come over my fence, up to my window, or even enter my house through an open garage door, is unacceptable. There are already cases of privacy violations as some mount extraordinary cameras on their homes for the purpose of catching glimpse of their neighbors in the nude. Now these people will have the opportunity to take the camera right up to anyone’s window for peeping.

Then there is the criminal who could use it for casing a prospect for their next burglary. There is a benefit for the product, however any well meaning product can be used for illicit purposes. I am not in favor of the press, who frequently violate people’s privacy all in the name of “journalism” and the publics “right to know,” having any additional weapons of intrusion. What was created for military use does not need to be in the hands of ordinary citizens without legislation.

Law enforcement may have a need in some cases. In this segment the video shows the use for locating a suspect. What about law enforcement using this for surveillance without a court order? It’s not wire tapping but it is just as invasive. Will the “evidence” be admissible in court? Or how about college co-eds taking spy photos from above the girls dorms where they sunbathe topless with some privacy. What happens when those photos are loaded to the web? What if it was your daughter? Or will this be the next tool for upskirting?

There are those who have strutted their stuff down the beach in bikinis, and objected, sued and won against those who took their picture. Sorry, if you’re going to flaunt it publicly I don’t see that as a privacy issue. Will the privacy fence around your home pool be bypassed legally by the neighbors sons or daughters? To use these cams in the proximity of a home, business, or public event is not permissible. And for those who can’t find a scalper to buy tickets for the next Super Bowl game, how many drones inside the stadium will be allowable? And then if it uploaded the net by black market techies who loses?

Next, my question deals with whether or not an individual, in defense of their privacy and property, will be held accountable for shooting down, netting, or damaging someone else’s drones? Will it be considered an act of vandalism for destroying someone else’s property? Or will you be able to claim self-defense? Once the drone is down, how easily will one be able to trace the ownership and person responsible? Will the owner of the drone have the audacity to knock on your door and ask for the return of their drone?

Airlines are concerned about the risk to commercial and private flights. A few of these in the hands of Al Qaeda would be just as bad as some of their other approaches. Should anyone using a drone be required to file a flight plan? After all it is an aircraft. Which agencies are to govern and control?

I even grin at the thought of a neighborhood snoop like Gladys Cravitz using one to spy on Samantha Stevens to catch her using witchcraft. We may soon learn of other sick uses on Criminal Minds. And then, what use will the Sandusky’s in this world use it for? Will their be a new reality tv show based on random window peeping? How many escape plans will be delivered over the prison fences? Will personal and corporate privacy give way to America’s addiction to voyeurism?

For the workplace, which companies or industries would be at the highest risk? Those involved with design such as architectural firms or advertising agencies? Will whistleblowers be protected using these at work? Should ATM’s have a protective curtain to keep drones from being able to view pin numbers? Or how will people’s login and password’s be guarded while using keyboards in a public venue? Will this be a new category requiring a Standard Operating Procedure for a companies Risk Management plan?

Before this product is too widely spread and the abuses are lined up in courts waiting for various judges to hand down various opinions on the legalities and or penalties, I recommend that congress get a handle on this quickly. Contact your legislator and express your position. Prepare for the coming privacy invasion and Celebrate Success!

All opinions and comments on this article are welcome.


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