Sunday, February 1, 2015

Raising Concerns: Criminals and Terrorists Find Uses For Drones

The drone, circled, landed in front of Ms Merkel as she 
delivered a speech sin Germany sparking fears that the 
device could easily be used to commit a terrorist act
Drones are becoming a tool for criminals and terrorists, worrying authorities who say the small unmanned aircraft are difficult to detect and stop, a concern heightened this week by the accidental crash of a drone at the White House.
Law-enforcement officials have discovered criminals smuggling drugs and other contraband across the U.S. border and into prisons using the types of consumer drones increasingly popular with entrepreneurs and hobbyists. And authorities in the U.S., Germany, Spain and Egypt have foiled at least six potential terrorist attacks with drones since 2011.
Hamas has used surveillance drones at rallies. 
Photographer: Said Khatib/AFP
U.S. authorities are worried that the problem is growing and that drones could be modified to mount attacks with explosives or chemical weapons, according to a presentation this month by federal intelligence and security officials to their counterparts in law enforcement and people who oversee critical infrastructure. Several attendees disclosed details of the summit to The Wall Street Journal, which also reviewed images of slides from the presentation.
Secret Service search the grounds of the North Lawn of the 
White House in Washington, Monday, Jan. 26, 2015.
“The threat is not going away,” one attendee quoted a U.S. counterterrorism analyst as saying.
On Monday a 2.8-pound drone crashed on the White House grounds before the Secret Service identified it, highlighting the risks of a possible drone attack. The Secret Service later said the drone accidentally crashed during a recreational flight and wasn’t a threat.
Police in Tijuana, Mexico, last week discovered a DJI drone 
that apparently crashed while attempting to carry a load 
of drugs to the U.S. Photo: AP
In response, SZ DJI Technology Co., the Chinese maker of the device, said it planned to change software on its drones to prevent them from flying over Washington. DJI added that it plans to disable its drones from crossing national borders after police in Tijuana, Mexico, discovered a DJI drone that apparently crashed while attempting to carry drugs to the U.S.
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