The world’s leading commercial drone manufacturer, DJI, appear to have stepped into the conflict in Syria and Iraq by designating large areas of both countries as ‘no fly zones’ for its drones.
After many recent reports of ISIS using commercial drones to drop various munitions onto Iraqi forces (which are supported by the West) could these new flight restrictions indicate that DJI does not want its technology to be used in any conflict zone by either side?
Iraqi forces are also using DJI drones to gather information before launching attacks. Unless DJI have given some sort of special ‘pass code’ to the Coalition Forces then the introduction of the No Fly Zones would restrict legitimate use of the technology and may put more lives at risk.
It is interesting that DJI, as a commercial entity, have decided to act in this way. For instance, ISIS use Toyota pick-up trucks as means of transport, would it be expected that the car manufacturer somehow limit the use of its products?
Overcoming DJI’s restrictions is fairly straight forward, a quick search on the internet will give details of how you can shield the GPS antenna or use different versions of control software can be used to still fly the drones in restricted areas. Given the restrictions are easy to overcome active Drone Defence is still required.
The manufacturer’s challenge of how to respond to nefarious drone user is set to continue, it is going to be interesting to keep watch.