Proposals to Address Privacy Violations and Surveillance by Unmanned Aerial Systems

29 Pages Posted: 22 Nov 2017

See all articles by Andrew Shelley

Andrew Shelley

Aviation Safety Management Systems Ltd; Andrew Shelley Economic Consulting Ltd; Massey University - Department of Defence and Security Studies

Date Written: 2016

Abstract

The rapid proliferation of unmanned aerial systems (UAS), commonly known as “drones”, has given rise to considerable public concern about privacy and unwelcome surveillance and observation. This paper reviews some of the privacy and surveillance concerns created by UAS, and considers the effectiveness of existing New Zealand law in addressing those concerns. Current law does not effectively address the new technology, and a package of legal and regulatory changes is required. UAS raise unique challenges, not least the anonymity of the operator, and the merits of alternative solutions are discussed. I propose the adoption of a package of measures including: tort law reform, the promulgation of a “Code of Practice for UAS Operations” under the Privacy Act 1993, an encoded radio frequency beacon to identify approved operators, provision for aerial trespass by unmanned aircraft, provision for the destruction of unmanned aircraft committing trespass, and the clarification of what constitutes a privacy violation by broadcast or closed-circuit television and video systems.

Keywords: privacy, surveillance, drones, UAS, regulation

JEL Classification: K20, L50

Suggested Citation

Shelley, Andrew, Proposals to Address Privacy Violations and Surveillance by Unmanned Aerial Systems (2016). Waikato Law Review, Vol. 24, No. 1, 2016, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3074728

Andrew Shelley (Contact Author)

Aviation Safety Management Systems Ltd ( email )

Feilding, Manawatu 4740
New Zealand
+64 21 549 045 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.asms.co.nz

Andrew Shelley Economic Consulting Ltd ( email )

Feilding, Manawatu 4740
New Zealand
+64 21 549 045 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.asec.co.nz

Massey University - Department of Defence and Security Studies ( email )

New Zealand

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