The Department of Homeland Security has sent an intelligence assessment to police agencies across the country about drones being used as weapons in an attack.
The bulletin warned that unmanned aircraft systems or drones could be used in the United States to advance terrorist and criminal activities.
According to federal officials, the rising trend in un-manned aircraft incidents within national airspace will continue as drones gain wider appeal with recreational users.
Just recently, two drones flew dangerously close to a Jet Blue plane and a Delta aircraft at JFK airport in New York City.
Kevin Mellott, an internationally recognized expert in emergency response and disaster operations, says the sales of drones are accelerating, with some advanced models costing just $1,200. That means it is becoming easier for anyone to get their hands on one. Mellott says this can throw off local law enforcement while trying to secure a facility. “Everybody is looking at the ground level, hardly anybody looks at the sky,” he said in a phone interview. “It’s important, from Homeland Security’s perspective, that people are thinking about how to prepare for this.”
The bulletin sent out by Homeland Security does say that while many of the drone encounters reported across the nation are not malicious in nature, they do highlight potential security vulnerabilities. “At the same point, we don’t have very good rules on drones. This has been going on for the last 10 years,” Mellott said, adding that the FAA has been conducting research to develop more laws surrounding un-manned aircraft systems. “There’s a lot of things that have to come together and they need to get moving because they’re behind the technology.”