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Event Description

Americans are increasingly familiar with drones, also known as Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS). These devices have become one of consumers’ most popular technology purchases; some estimate nearly one million new drones will be purchased in 2016. Many consumer drones are controlled by tablet or smartphone, and feature high-definition cameras, GPS, and the ability to fly autonomously. Commercially available drones are even more sophisticated, and are increasingly used for a variety of activities, including monitoring and inspection, news reporting, search and rescue of missing persons, and delivery of commercial packages or medicine to rural areas. With potential to transform entire industries, the devices may generate significant economic benefits. Although drones may offer society numerous benefits, the potential for information collection through filming, photography or other types of monitoring raises the potential for consumer harms including invasion of privacy, identification, trespass, and harassment. The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) recently convened multi-stakeholder meetings to develop and communicate best practices for privacy, accountability, and transparency issues regarding commercial and private drone use. The drones workshop will explore the following questions related to commercial uses of drones:

What are the present capabilities of drone technologies?

  • What technology do we foresee in the near future? In the longer term?
  • What privacy concerns do drones raise?
  • Are these concerns unique to drones, or are drones no different from other technologies?

For people whose information may be captured by drones, what is the best way to provide transparency?

  • Given the difficulties of providing consumers with meaningful choices, what should the rules around privacy look like?
  • Should there be limits on data collection or limits on use?

Video from the Workshop

FTC staff also live-tweeted from the workshop @FTC using the hashtag #DronesFTC.

  • 12:00 pm

    Registration

    1:00 pm

    Introductory Remarks

    Jamie Hine
    Senior Attorney, Division of Privacy and Identity Protection, Federal Trade Commission


    Opening Remarks

    Maureen Ohlhausen
    Commissioner, Federal Trade Commission

    1:15 pm

    Presentation by Office of Technology Research & Investigation

    Joseph Calandrino
    Phoebe Rouge
    Chrysm Watson-Ross
    Office of Technology Research & Investigation, Federal Trade Commission

    1:30 pm

    Panel 1: Do Drones Raise Unique Privacy Concerns?

    • What are the present capabilities of drone technologies?
    • What technology do we foresee in the near future? In the longer term?
    • What privacy concerns do drones raise?
    • Are these concerns unique to drones, or are drones no different from other technologies?

    Moderator:
    Jamie Hine/Kate White

    Federal Trade Commission

    Panelists:

    • Gregory McNeal
      Professor of Law and Public Policy, Pepperdine University School of Law Co-Founder, AirMap
    • Jeramie D. Scott
      Director, EPIC Domestic Surveillance Project
    • Brendan Schulman
      Vice President of Policy & Legal Affairs, DJI
    • Kara Calvert
      Director, Drone Manufacturers Alliance

    2:40 pm

    Break

    3:00 pm

    Presentation: Consumer Perceptions of Drones

    Yang Wang
    Assistant Professor, School of Information Studies, Syracuse University

    3:20 pm

    Panel 2: How Should Privacy Concerns Raised By Drones Be Addressed?

    • For people whose information may be captured by drones, what is the best way to provide transparency?
    • Given the difficulties of providing consumers with meaningful choices, what should the rules around privacy look like?
    • Should there be limits on data collection or limits on use?

    Moderator:
    Jamie Hine/Kate White
    Federal Trade Commission

    Panelists:
    • Margot E. Kaminski
      Assistant Professor of Law, Moritz College of Law, The Ohio State University
    • Dr. Jeremy Gillula
      Senior Staff Technologist, Electronic Frontier Foundation
    • Diana Cooper
      Vice President of Legal and Policy Affairs, PrecisionHawk
    • Mark Aitken
      Director of Government Relations, AUVSI
    • Michael Drobac
      Small UAV Coalition, AKIN GUMP STRAUSS HAUER & FELD LLP
    • Kristine Gloria
      Privacy Research Fellow, Startup Policy Lab

     

FTC Privacy Policy

Under the Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”) or other laws, we may be required to disclose to outside organizations the information you provide when you pre-register. The Commission will consider all timely and responsive public comments, whether filed in paper or electronic form, and as a matter of discretion, we make every effort to remove home contact information for individuals from the public comments before posting them on the FTC website.

The FTC Act and other laws we administer permit the collection of your pre-registration contact information and the comments you file to consider and use in this proceeding as appropriate. For additional information, including routine uses permitted by the Privacy Act, see the Commission’s comprehensive Privacy Policy.

This event is open to the public and may be photographed, videotaped, webcast, or otherwise recorded. By participating in this event, you are agreeing that your image — and anything you say or submit — may be posted indefinitely at ftc.gov or on one of the Commission's publicly available social media sites.