The report of a secret FAA committee would relax safety rules for drones operating over populated areas. The report also makes no mention of the privacy risks of aerial surveillance by small drones. Like the FAA registration task force, the FAA small drones committee was composed of mostly industry members and did not include any privacy or consumer protection groups. The report recommends allowing drones to fly within 20' above a person or within 10' next to a person. EPIC previously sued the FAA for failing to establish privacy rules for commercial drones. EPIC v. FAA is pending before the D.C. Circuit. EPIC also filed a FOIA lawsuit against the FAA for the records of the secret drone task force meetings.
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by Ryan Calo, A. Michael Froomkin,