This is Part 2 of a two part series, for more info please read the first blog on our website: www.glgattorneys.com/blog/
The FAA will require Remote Identification (Remote ID) of drones starting in February of 2021. Interestingly, Google isn’t very happy about the new Remote ID rule. In fact, its drone delivery division, aptly-named Wing, recently posted an article arguing that the FAA’s Remote ID rule might let third-parties track your movements, figuring out where you go, where you live, and where and when you receive packages.
Wing doesn’t assert that drones shouldn’t transmit their locations at all; the Google subsidiary just wants all the information to be sent through the internet instead of local broadcasting!
The internet vs. local transmission issue has been debated for over a year and the following arguments have been made against tracking drones through the internet:
● The added cost of adding a cellular modem to a drone;
● The related cost of paying for a monthly cellular data plan;
● The lack of reliable cellular coverage across the entirety of the U.S.;
● The cost of paying a third-party to track and store drone data; and
● The possibility of a breach of the third-party data broker.
The proponents of Remote ID, including Wing, argue that Remote ID is like a “license plate” for the skies, nothing more intrusive than what you already have on your car. This isn’t exactly true for a transmitter that broadcasts even locally and an internet-based solution, like the one Wing envisions, would be even more susceptible to third-party voyeurs. Naturally, opinions on the matter depend on who benefits from the ability to mine internet data (ahem, Google).