A bill from Utah state Sen. Wayne Harper would establish criminal penalties for misusing unmanned aircraft and empower first responders or law enforcement to “neutralize” a drone. Examples of misusing a drone would include voyeurism, flying them within 500 feet of a correctional facility, photography near crowds of more than 500 people and flying them within 3 miles of a wildfire.
“We’ve had drones that have followed somebody down the street – watch them as they close the door and then watch them through the window of their house after they have gone inside,” he says.
Backlash against drones will likely continue as the increasing use of automated technology and other Wi-Fi-connected devices raise concerns about privacy and security, says Bruce Schneier, a fellow at Harvard University’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society.
“We will increasingly see rights bump up against each other, like my right to have a drone versus your right to privacy,” Schneier says. “Amazon wants to deliver packages using drones, but terrorists can also deliver bombs by drones. We need to figure where the rights collide and what should happen.”