Drones Pose Four Main Threats to a Completely Unprepared Security Industry Attack


Drones are the ultimate weapon for terrorist groups and vandals looking to cause maximum damage from a distance and at a low price. These small devices can transport grenades and other small weapons, as well  as dangerous chemical substances. They represent a serious threat to the population, but also for Law Enforcement.


Drones can easily fly into restricted airspace and threaten the security of sensitive sites. With some drones weighing over 10kg (22lbs), they pose a serious struck-by hazard to passers-by on the ground or to aircraft. The risk of a drone losing control due to bad weather, bad piloting or even loss of battery is high


Consumer drones are available for purchase online or in stores at affordable prices and are easy to operate.  Criminals have adapted them to smuggle contraband into hard to reach areas, such as prisons, ports or across borders. Depending on the drone model, the maximum payload weight can vary from several hundred grams to several kilograms.


Sensitive sites are at risk of an airborne cyberattack as small drones are capable of carrying nano computers and routers. This means that sensitive information can be stolen without any security alert being triggered. Sightings of Peeping Tom drones have soared and some criminals have even used the devices to scope out properties before breaking in.

Drone Detection and Neutralization Technologies

With so many different anti-drone methods jostling for attention, understanding drone detection and neutraliza-  tion can be an intimidating task. All the same, a handful of technologies have gradually risen above the rest  and been adopted by the majority of security providers:


RF technology analyses the RF spectrum within the protected area , searching for any form of communication between a drone and its remote-control. In some cases, RF can even identify  the drone make and model, as well as the MAC  address for WiFi drones.

Pros: Drone and pilot localization. Drone  characterization. Passive technology. Multiple drone  detection

Cons: Does not detect autonomous drones. Local RF  pollution may reduce effectiveness.

Optic (Cameras)

Optics allow visual detection and characterization of  approa ching drones and drone payloads. Like radar,  optics can be successfully combined with RF technology to provide more thorough coverage.

Pros: Visuals can be retained and used for forensic  evidence of drone intrusions. Passive technology.  Few restrictions for use.

Cons: Without RF or radar back-up false alarm rates  are high. Performance impacted by light and weather  conditions. Difficulties detecting small drones.


Radar can provide effective detection  of drone  presence over a long range. It can be successfully  paired with other technologies , such as RF or optic,  to provide more thorough coverage if desired.

Pros: Long range. Constant coverage.  Drone  tracking. Multiple drone detection.

Cons: Can interfere with ambient communications.  Can require authorizations from local authorities.  Difficulties detecting small drones.


Acoustic sensors recognize drone sounds from a  database of drone acoustic signatures.

Pros: Can detect autonomous drones and provide  azimuthal information on incoming drone direction.  Cons: Sound database must be constantly updated  to be effective. Drones are becoming more and more  noiseless as technology advances. Difficulties  tracking modified drones.

Drone Neutralization Technologies

A follow-up to drone detection, countermeasures* may be active or passive depending on the severity and nature  of the threat and the authorizations available to the security administrator.

Passive Countermeasures may include evacuati on  and retreat to a safe place, blocking access points  such as windows, halting data transfers, confidential  conversations or other sensitive operations, etc.

Active Countermeasures such as jamming  technology or net throwers, are typically reserved for  Military or Police personnel only. It is important to  consult regulatory legislation on the subject.