Cyber Security Risks with Drone Technology

Aerotas is aware of a warning issued by the Department of Homeland Security in regards to the information security associated with Chinese manufactured unmanned aircraft systems. While the warning issued does not specifically name any single manufacturer, presumably this includes DJI, which manufacturers nearly 80% of the drones used in the US and Canada.

To date, there has been no evidence of DJI improperly handling customer data, or sending or stealing data in any manner not explicitly allowed by the customer. In 2018, DJI hired an independent consulting firm to examine its data practices, and found no improper management of data.

While this is encouraging information, Aerotas takes additional safeguards with all customer data, using industry-standard information security procedures and encryption technology during the storage and transmission of all customer data. Further, we encourage our customers to implement standard cyber security policies as a further safeguard against cyber attacks, whether they come from a drone manufacturer, or any other source.

However, for some operators, and on some particularly sensitive sites, this is still not enough. Some of our clients occasionally need to perform a survey over sensitive sites such as military installations, or critical national infrastructure projects. In these cases, there are alternative hardware options, though typically at significantly higher price points than comparable Chinese hardware. If you are interested in alternative hardware options, contact us at

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