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Drones and Domestic Surveillance in the UK

Britons are the most-watched citizens in the democratic world because of an array of systems including CCTV, cameras that track vehicles, vast government databases and the sharing of personal data.  That surveillance will increase with the use of drones in the domestic arena. A pilot scheme by local British Police will use unmanned helicopter drones for surveillance. It was “quite probable,” police said, that the drones would become commonplace and be used during the 2012 Olympic Games. The Telegraph also reports that six other police forces were considering using the drones, potentially to monitor offenses such as illegal dumping. The use of drones in a domestic law-enforcement context raises significant problems in terms of consent and notice, as they are barely visible from the ground, and yet have the potential to track and film people in real time.


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