By Alex Byers, Politico’s Morning Tech, April 12, 2013
CHAFFETZ: ‘EVERY CONFIDENCE’ THAT GPS ACT WILL CLEAR COMMITTEE – Rep. Jason Chaffetz is plenty positive when it comes to whether his bill – which would require law enforcement to score a warrant before obtaining the location of your cellphone – will pass the House Judiciary panel. “…”The last thing the major carriers or hardware companies want to do is have people become afraid of their phones or other mobile devices,” he said. Chaffetz said he didn’t have an exact timeline on next steps, although your MT-er has heard rumblings for a while about a location privacy hearing later this month. Chaffetz added that he’d prefer tackling the issue as a standalone item, instead of conflating the issue with email privacy reform – the opposite of what’s been suggested by Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner, chairman of the Judiciary subcommittee that will likely have jurisdiction and a co-sponsor of the GPS Act.
by Jason Koebler, US News & World Report, Feb 5, 2012
The Virginia General Assembly passed a bill Tuesday that will put a two-year moratorium on the use of drones by state and local law enforcement. If signed by Gov. Bob McDonnell, Virginia will become the first state in the U.S. to enact drone regulations. Virginia House Bill 2012 easily passed Monday by a vote of 83-16 and its companion, Senate Bill 1331, passed Tuesday by a vote of 36-2.
For full text of the article, visit Virginia Becomes First State to Pass Drone Regulations – US News and World Report.
by Jake Ellison, SeattlePI.com, February 4, 2012
Weighing in at 16 grams and capable of performing in “harsh environments and windy conditions” a tiny drone unveiled by the British government today shows just how quickly drone technology and use is developing.“The Black Hornet is equipped with a tiny camera which gives troops reliable full-motion video and still images. Soldiers are using it to peer around corners or over walls and other obstacles to identify any hidden dangers and the images are displayed on a handheld terminal,” the British government wrote. And as the Seattle Police Department, like many others in the nation, becomes eager to use drones as part of their police work, Seattle Councilman Bruce Harrell jumped into the fray this afternoon with proposed legislation to rein in drone use.
For full text and copy of the proposed rules visit Drones get really tiny; new rules proposed for Seattle – seattlepi.com.
- From the start, SPD’s drones have come under fire (q13fox.com)
Disclaimer: These links were collected and accessed on April 8, 2012. This list is not intended to be comprehensive, but rather is a short bibliography of recent articles on unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV/ sUAV) and drones, with a primary focus on the legal and policy issues surrounding their use within the United States.
FAA LEGISLATION AND REGULATION OF DRONES
- The 2012 FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 (H.R. 658 ENR; P.L. 112-95), signed Feb. 14, 2012, mandates that drones be fully integrated into American airspace by September 30, 2015. http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?c112:H.R.658: and http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=112&session=2&vote=00015
- Senate Floor Debate of Conference Report on H.R. 658, FAA Reauthorization and Reform Act of 2012, February 6, 2012: http://www.c-spanvideo.org/program/SenateSession4969
- Conference Report on H.R. 658, FAA Reauthorization and Reform Act of 2012, Congressional Record Volume 158, Number 16 (February 1, 2012), House of Representatives, Pages H230 – H304, Posted to FAS Website: http://www.fas.org/sgp/news/2012/02/faa-uas.html
- FAA requires government and research organizations to apply for authorization before they can operate a drone. The Operation and Certification of Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (SUAS), 76 Fed. Reg. 40,107 (July 7, 2011), available at http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2011-07-07/pdf/2011-15494.pdf#page=16.
- Press Release – FAA asks for Public Input on UAS Test Site Selection, FAA, March 7, 2012: http://www.faa.gov/news/press_releases/news_story.cfm?newsId=13393
- FAA UAS General Information and Webinars: http://www.faa.gov/about/initiatives/uas
- Timeline for Rule-making (Geiger 2012): https://www.cdt.org/blogs/harley-geiger/2703drone-countdown
- Drones – Privacy Paradox: Privacy and Its Conflicting Values (Video), 2012 Stanford Law Review Symposium, The Center for Internet and Society, Stanford University, February 2, 2012 (video quality of symposium poor, but discussion interesting and includes video of what’s possible to do with drones): http://www.c-span.org/Events/Panel-Discusses-Domestic-Drones-and-Privacy/10737429618 and https://cyberlaw.stanford.edu/multimedia/drones-privacy-paradox-privacy-and-its-conflicting-values-video
- The Impact of Domestic Drones on Privacy, Safety and National Security (Video), Brookings Institute, April 4, 2012: http://www.brookings.edu/events/2012/0404_domestic_drones.aspx
- Robots that fly…and cooperate (Video), Professor Vijay Kumar, Department of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mathematics, GRASP Laboratory, School of Engineering and Applied Science, University of Pennsylvania, TEDtalks [YouTube], March 1, 2012: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ErEBkj_3PY and links to Kumar’s other YouTube videos:
- Acerman, Spenser. 2011. “Occupy the Skies! Protesters Could Use Spy Drones,” Wired Magazine, November 18, 2011: http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2011/11/ows-drones
- Ackerman, Evan. 2011. “Could Domestic Surveillance Drones Spur Tougher Privacy Laws?” IEEE Spectrum Blog, IEEE Website, December 19, 2011: http://spectrum.ieee.org/automaton/robotics/military-robots/could-domestic-surveillance-drones-spur-tougher-privacy-laws
On April 4, 2012, Governance Studies at Brookings Institution will hold a forum focused on the privacy, safety and national security implications of drones in American airspace. A panel of experts will address the challenge of realizing the many potential benefits of drones while minimizing the risks that will accompany their growing use.
For more information and to register for this event, visit The Impact of Domestic Drones on Privacy, Safety and National Security – Brookings Institution.
- The Drone as Privacy Catalyst (geodatapolicy.wordpress.com)
Follow-up op-ed by Patrick Meier, iRevolution Blog, February 18, 2012
In my [Patrick Meier's] previous blog post on the use of drones for human rights, I also advocated for the use of drones to support nonviolent civil resistance efforts. Obviously, like the use of any technology in such contexts, doing so presents both new opportunities and obvious dangers. In this blog post, I consider the use of DIY drones in the context of civil resistance, both vis-a-vis theory and practice. While I’ve read the civil resistance literature rather widely for my dissertation, I decided to get input from two of the world’s leading experts on the topic. …
For full text of this article, visit The Use of Drones for Nonviolent Civil Resistance | iRevolution.
By Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, March 7, 2012
A Maryland court last week ruled that the government does not need a warrant to force a cell phone provider to disclose more than six months of data on the movements of one of its customers. … Judge Richard D. Bennett ruled that a warrant is not required to obtain cell-site location records (CSLR) from a wireless carrier. … The Obama administration laid out its position in a legal brief last month, arguing that customers have “no privacy interest” in CSLR held by a network provider. Under a legal principle known as the “third-party doctrine,” information voluntarily disclosed to a third party ceases to enjoy Fourth Amendment protection. …
For full text of this article, visit Obama admin wants warrantless access to cell phone location data.
- Obama admin wants warrantless access to cell phone location data (arstechnica.com)
- United States v. Flores-Lopez (jolt.law.harvard.edu)
- Court Ruling Opens Phones To Warrantless Searches (forbes.com)
- New CRS Report on Governmental Tracking of Cell Phones and Vehicles (geodatapolicy.wordpress.com)
by Bruce Schneier, Schneier on Security, November 9, 2010
Internet Eyes is a U.K. startup designed to crowdsource digital surveillance. People … can log onto the site and view live anonymous feeds from surveillance cameras at retail stores. If they notice someone shoplifting, they can alert the store owner. … Although the system has some nod towards privacy, groups like Privacy International oppose the system for fostering a culture of citizen spies. … This isn’t the first time groups have tried to crowdsource surveillance camera monitoring. Texas’s Virtual Border Patrol tried the same thing: deputizing the general public to monitor the Texas-Mexico border. …
For full text of this article, visit Schneier on Security: Crowdsourcing Surveillance.
Abstract: This paper investigates the problems associated with remote sensing from space-based platforms as they relate to the protection of the rights of indigenous peoples around the world. Many nations and international organizations recognize a right of individual privacy. This paper advances the notion of a right to collective privacy, what can best be described as a “communal right of privacy,” especially as it relates to the rights of indigenous people to be free of wanton exploitation from data on their lands and waters that are collected from orbiting surveillance and sensing platforms. Indigenous peoples argue that since they are the direct descendants of the original peoples who settled their lands before conquest by outsiders, they have an “inalienable” right to their territories and the natural resources contained therein (Nagengast, Stavenhagen, and Kearney, 1992, 31). Clearly, the sparse number of international treaties and other regimes that seek to protect the rights of indigenous people to their lands and resources must be strengthened to address privacy protections against wanton snooping from overhead surveillance satellites.
For full text of this article, which is still very relevant today, click here.
- What is the UN Declaration on Indigenous Rights? (greenanswers.com)
Three great articles by Robert Gellman on location privacy, on First Amendment & Fourth Amendment issues in the US Supreme Court’s GPS Tracking case (US v. Jones), and on the complexities of legislating privacy after US v Jones — in the Communia Blog of the Woodrow Wilson Center‘s Commons Lab.
- Legislating Privacy after US v Jones: Can Congress Limit Government Use of New Surveillance Technologies?
- Nader, Onassis, and Jones: Privacy in Public and Limits on the Private Sector
- Location Privacy: Is Privacy in Public a Contradiction in Terms?
Robert Gellman, JD is a privacy and information policy consultant in Washington, D.C. He served for 17 years on the staff of a subcommittee in the House of Representatives. He can be reached at bob [at] bobgellman. [dot] com or visit his website at http://www.bobgellman.com/.
- Legislating Privacy After US v Jones (geodatapolicy.wordpress.com)
- Supreme Court Relies on Kerr’s Theory of Fourth Amendment and Property (geodatapolicy.wordpress.com)
- Supreme Court GPS Tracking Case: Round-up and Resources (geodatapolicy.wordpress.com)
- Supreme Court Ruled on GPS Tracking Case, Backs Privacy Rights (geodatapolicy.wordpress.com)
- GPS Surveillance: A Crossroads for the Fourth Amendment (geodatapolicy.wordpress.com)
- Supremes to Congress: Bring privacy law into 21st century (news.cnet.com)