NTIA looks for UAS answers

Shutterstock image: hover drone.

What: A National Telecommunications and Information Administration notice on privacy, transparency and accountability for commercial and private use of unmanned aerial systems (UAS).

Why: On Feb. 15, President Barack Obama issued a Presidential Memorandum, "Promoting Economic Competitiveness While Safeguarding Privacy, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties in Domestic Use of Unmanned Aircraft Systems," directing NTIA to establish a multi-stakeholder engagement process to develop best practices for privacy, accountability and transparency issues for commercial and private UAS use in the National Airspace System.

NTIA's March 2 notice kicks off the process to implement the president’s order.

The agency is looking for ways to make UAS use by companies and individuals transparent to the public, along with trying to identify who is using drones and what the systems are being used for. The agency also wants to know about "data practices associated with UAS operations," including what data the systems are collecting and storing." NTIA asks a number of questions about how potential UAS applications could affect privacy. For example, it's looking for input on whether UAS-based Internet service raises unique privacy issues compared to traditional wireline or ground-based wireless service.

The agency is concerned about commercial and private UAS aerial data collection that is more sustained, pervasive, and invasive than manned flight. On the other hand, the notice said the systems can reduce costs for many applications and can create novel services that could jump-start areas of innovative business.

Posted by Mark Rockwell on Mar 06, 2015 at 8:58 AM


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