Senator Markey Calls for Additional Privacy Safeguards in White House Announcement on Drones

Senator has introduced legislation with Rep. Peter Welch to ensure transparency and privacy for drone use

Washington (August 2, 2016) – Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) a member of the Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, released the following statement today after the White House announced new efforts to integrate unmanned aircraft systems, more commonly known as drones, into U.S. airspace.

“While I am pleased that the White House continues its efforts to safely integrate drones into our national airspace, when it comes to drone privacy, we are still essentially flying blind,” said Senator Markey. “As more drones take flight, voluntary privacy guidelines and best practices are simply not enough. Drones flying overhead could collect very sensitive and personally identifiable information about millions of Americans, but right now, we don’t have sufficient safeguards in place to protect our privacy. We need to put privacy rules on the books now before more and more drones take flight over our heads and backyards.”

 

In March 2015, Senator Markey and Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) introduced bicameral legislation to establish safeguards to protect the privacy of individuals from the expanded use of drones. The Drone Aircraft Privacy and Transparency Act ensures standards for informing the public about the location, timing and ownership of unmanned aerial vehicles.