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Drones and the police
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DAC Lucy D'Orsi discusses criminal use of drones

In January 2019 I took responsibility for developing the UK police national counter drones strategy and capability. This is to counter the threat from drones in several areas such as organised crime and terrorism.

Drones or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) are becoming ever more popular. Their versatility is being explored by all sections of our communities to carry out a whole host of functions. Drones are making an indelible mark on our day to day lives and their future potential has been debated by several think tanks and academics. Government is considering the UKs position on the potential for the drone’s industry in the UK and everyone continues to look at drone development and usage across the International landscape.

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As with any developing technology, there will always be those who seek to utilise drone capability for illicit and illegal means. We are working closely with government and industry to develop a raft of measures that will help in the fight against drone enabled crime whilst allowing those that want to lawfully use drones for business or pleasure to do so relatively unimpeded. We have some exceptionally talented officers who are working with government and industry experts to look at how we develop counter drone technology to afford maximum security to the UK from drone enabled crime.

The public play a vital role to countering the threat from drones. We continue to appeal to everyone to let us know about any suspicious drone activity. If you see something that doesn’t feel right then it probably isn’t, so please contact the police.

To those intent on using drones for criminal purposes, through developing technology and traditional policing we will track you down and prosecute. Maybe not always immediately, but eventually.

This is an exciting area of police work and our progress is gaining speed as we work closer with industry and scientists to develop groundbreaking solutions to this threat.

For more information and the latest guidance flying a drone please visit

National Police Chiefs' Council Lead for Criminal use of Unmanned Aerial Systems (Drones) CC Lucy D'Orsi