What Is a Drone?

When people hear the word “drone”, majority of them think of a small flying vehicle. Well that’s essentially what it is. A drone is any unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) or remotely piloted aircraft (RPA), where majority of commercial drones are multi-rotors and the most popular are quadrocopters (4 rotors). Most modern drones can be equipped with a camera to act as a security operator with a bird’s eye view of the flight path, and some modern commercial drones come equipped with cameras already.

Many people think that drones are solely military used devices, however, these devices also function and are displayed as wildly enjoyable toys for the masses. They also have practical commercial applications including monitoring livestock, pipeline security, road patrol, search and rescue, wildfire mapping, videography and anti-piracy that allow them to act as great security systems without putting the people in harm’s way.

Negative Side

As these drones become more and more popular and useful, some people use them in illegal ways as well. They have been used to smuggle drugs and weapons into prisons and as tools in corporate espionage. In addition, some drones have been used to hover over some of the worlds top data centers to gather sensitive information.

The Importance of Properly Securing Drones – Report

In 2017, At a day-long workshop on drones and privacy in October, researchers from the Federal Trade Commission demonstrated how they were able to hack into three different off-the-shelf drones, all costing less than $200. Specifically, researchers were able to connect to a drone’s camera feeds from any computer due to the unsecured Wi-Fi network that was not password protected. Once a drone’s camera feed is accessed, the entire network can be hacked, thus leading to a large amount of sensitive and highly classified information being accessed by non-trusted people. This proposes a major threat to not only the hacked system, but to all organizations using drones.

Despite their ability to fly and have a bird’s eye view on all operations occurring in the drone’s view, these devices are not much different from video cameras when it comes to properly securing them. It’s crucial to understand that any device has the potential of being hacked, no matter the level of intelligence, therefore, we must ensure we are incorporating the highest level of security to mitigate the risk of intrusion. Primarily, for any individual or organization purchasing a drone, its important to evaluate whether or not the drone offers encrypted communication. Encrypted communication for example is a method of “if you don’t have the proper key to the lock, it won’t open”. Having this system incorporated in the drone will help safeguard the communication between the drone and the ground station that monitors the drone’s activity. Secondly, once the drone has been purchased, its important to integrate a new password that only the trusted people know. As each drone comes with a default password, if we don’t reset, it can lead to multiple security breaches.

Defending the Perimeter – Report

Any individual or organizations first line of defense in securing a specific building should be to implement a perimeter security system that provides alerts in the presence of a possible intruder. This will allow the property owner to prepare a security plan in advance – providing an advantage in securing/defending the property.

Benefits of Perimeter Security – Report

Having an effective perimeter security system is crucial in ensuring the protection of highly sensitive information. It allows you to consistently monitor all activities occurring in and out of the property, and also provides you with advance warning of any potential intruders.

When planning and implementing a perimeter security, here are some factors to consider:

  • Is there limited visibility caused by structures
  • Do you have an expansive property that can be easily approached from several directions
  • Are you located near a major roadway where travelers might have to abandon vehicles and continue moving by feet
  • Do you live near other people
  • How is your visibility of the area surrounding your building

Why Use Drones For Perimeter Security – Report              

Drones are one of the most effective ways in ensuring a proper security system is in place as it provides ease, non-human contact and is ultimately very competent. In terms of perimeter security, drones provide several advantages over mounted cameras or simple human patrol.

Mobile Video Surveillance

Unlike a mounted camera, which is fixed on a specific area, drones are mobile and continuously move around in a bird’s eye view position to oversee all activities occurring in a designated area. These drones also have a 360-degree view whereas most mounted cameras face a single direction. The real-time video surveillance capabilities of a drone provide the ability to immediately assess whether an activity is a potential threat or a friendly engagement.

Remote Control

The ability to operate and control the drone from a distance allows the operator to decide where the drone should spend more or less time patrolling. It also keeps the operator out of harm’s way and facilitates the surveillance of large areas in a short amount of time and of areas that would be difficult to travel by feet.

Stealth

There are many drones being sold as we speak. These drones are generally manufactured to move very quietly and also have a long range of capabilities in terms of security needs.

Drones cannot be avoided through methods like hiding or “blending in” as they have an overview look on all actions occurring beneath them. However, a negative aspect is that humans do have the ability to shoot down a drone from the sky, but again with the use of a drone, it does not place the operator in harms way.

Features To Look For In a Perimeter Defense Drone – Report

  1. Detection Software

A detection software is a system installed in the drone which allows it to recognize perimeter breaches and immediately report it to the proximity of the breach

  1. Flight Time Change

Essentially when you want your desired flight path to be accomplished with a single charge

  1. Safety Features

The safety features installed in the drone allows it to detect and avoid objects in the flight path, emergency landing gear in the event of mechanical failure, and a ‘return-to-base’ function if the drone’s battery runs low or the connection with the operator is lost

  1. Video

A video monitor can be displayed on the controller of the drone, streamed to a smartphone device, or connected via video goggles for a first-hand, virtual reality experience.

Should We Implement?                                                         

In terms of security needs, drones are a very effective and useful device that are capable of providing strong perimeter security for any individual or group. However, these drones do require a significant financial investment and a correct amount of electrical and aerodynamical knowledge to sustain. Drones are highly dependent on having sufficient electrical power, therefore only certain people may have the opportunity to purchase one. Ultimately, drones represent a new and evolved security method that many organizations should consider in investing but should also be aware of the consequences and steps it takes to obtain and maintain one. When used appropriately, drones can be one of the most effective security defenses, but when used incorrectly, they could result in severe consequences.