Drones Coming to US Airspace
John Villasenor, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and a professor of electrical engineering at UCLA, explains that drones are coming to the United States. The FAA predicts that by 2020 there could be up to 30,000 drones in operation in the United States. In February, President Obama signed a bill requiring the FAA to make plans to integrate drones into American airspace. The American Civil Liberties Union said the legislation could severely undermine Americans’ privacy.
Drones could also be used commercially by real estate firms to get overhead images of a property, by surveyors and cinematographers, and even by paparazzi trying to fly over celebrity homes, says Villasenor.
He points to the 2001 case Kyllo v. United States, in which the Supreme Court ruled that the use of a thermal imaging device to monitor heat radiated from inside someone’s home without a search warrant violated the Fourth Amendment.
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