Underreported political and security risk updates from around the world, including events in Rwanda, Nigeria, Brazil, Ecuador, China, New Zealand, Germany, Russia, Egypt and Saudi Arabia.
Islamic State has used aerial drones for reconnaissance and battlefield intelligence in Iraq and Syria and has attempted to use aerial and ground drones with explosive payloads to attack Kurdish troops. Should we therefore be concerned about the possibility of Islamic State or another terrorist group using drones to attack Western cities? If so, what should we do to address the threat?
On 11 January 2016, the Remote Control project published a groundbreaking new report from Open Briefing on the potential hostile use of civilian drones. The report was widely covered in the news media, including by the Guardian, Daily Mail, Express and BBC, as well as in the technology press, including Wired and Tech Insider. Open Briefing analysts also gave several interviews to TV and radio news programmes, including RT.
This briefing is provided as a supplement to the Open Briefing/Remote Control Project report Hostile drones: The hostile use of drones by non-state actors against civilian targets. Our findings are based on a risk assessment involving 270 individual likelihood/impact judgements taking into account the type of threat group, the type of unmanned vehicle, the theatre, the nature of the threat and the target.
A new report from Open Briefing has found that as ever-more advanced drones are available to the civilian market there is an increased risk of drones being used by non-state actors against British targets. As approximately 200,000 civilian-use drones are being sold worldwide every month, the legislation currently governing the civilian use of drones is struggling to keep up with the speed at which new drones are being developed and put to novel uses.
In this groundbreaking report for the Remote Control project, Open Briefing has analysed over 200 commercially-available drones and assessed known drone use by non-state groups, including terrorist organisations, insurgent groups, organised crime groups, corporations and activists. The report sets out a series of recommendations to mitigate the threat from the hostile use of drones, including specific regulatory, passive and active countermeasures.
The Bureau of Investigative Journalism's new annual report reveals that for the first time since 2004 there were no confirmed reports of civilian casualties in Pakistan from US drone strikes. However, in this blog post, Open Briefing's Executive Director, Chris Abbott, argues it is not all good news and asks whether 2014 might, in fact, be the year of the drone.
Open Briefing has identified at least 200 different UAVs in use or in development by China, India, Iran, Israel, Russia and Turkey, with 29 of these being armed drones. The study also assesses the likely future use of armed drones by each country.