Inside Unmanned Systems

AUG-SEP 2018

Inside Unmanned Systems provides actionable business intelligence to decision-makers and influencers operating within the global UAS community. Features include analysis of key technologies, policy/regulatory developments and new product design.

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66 unmanned systems inside   August/September 2018 AIR LAW ENFORCEMENT T he dream that drones may one day perform deliveries is pur- sued by a number of corpo- rate giants, including Amazon, UPS, Mercedes-Benz, Domino's Pizza and Google's parent company Alphabet. However, industry titans are not the only enterprises pioneering drone de- livery—drones have already been spot- ted f lying over prison walls to deliver heroin and marijuana in Mansfield, Ohio, and cell phones in Pensacola, Florida. In a number of other cases, drug traffickers have f lown metham- phetamines, heroin and marijuana from Mexico across the U.S. border. Around the planet, law enforcement agencies are now investigating drones used in crimes. And drones can do more than just deliver contraband. "They've been used to surveil military installations and sensitive institutions, and they've been accused of being used to spy on neighbors and stalk people," said Steve Watson, chief executive of- ficer of data recovery and digital fo- rensics firm VTO Labs in Broomfield, Colorado. "And in May, the FBI re- vealed drones were used to disrupt the monitoring of a hostage situation." If drones used in crime do get cap- tured, investigators will want to extract as much data from them as possible to help their cases. Now, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has developed a website to help authorities glean "forensic images" from drones. These images are available to download for free at www.cfreds.nist. gov/drone-images.html. Photos courtesy of VTO Labs. We seek to answer basic investigative questions from data stored within the drone or its connected devices. Where did the drone take off from? Has the drone flown other routes? Can we identify who the drone is registered to? What devices or networks has the drone connected to?" Steve Watson, CEO, VTO Labs " EXTRACTING FORENSIC DATA FROM DRONES A new online database can help law enforcement glean precious details from drones. by Charles Q. Choi Kaitlyn Fox, a laboratory assistant at VTO Labs, inspects an aerial drone while VTO chief technology officer Steve Watson reviews data from the drone.

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