Airports urged to take a unified approach against drones

In response to the recent UK Airprox Board report that the number of times a drone endangered the safety of an aircraft in UK airspace rose by more than a third last year, Simon Barnes, Business Development Manager – Airports Europe for Genetec highlights the issue in terms of airport perimeter security.

“News that drone threats to aircraft are increasing should come as no surprise. The high-profile incidents at Heathrow and Gatwick over Christmas, and February’s drone-related suspension of flights at Dublin airport are just the tip of the iceberg. As drones become increasingly ubiquitous – both from hobbyists and their growing use in professional arenas – we can expect to see many more incidents. We know from speaking to airports across the world that two of the most pressing challenges they face is how they secure their perimeters (as intruders become increasingly sophisticated) and identifying “Friend from Foe” as operational needs must be maintained.”

“When it specifically comes to drone detection, the short-term temptation can be to introduce a dedicated new technology to address this specific threat. However, the last thing a functioning airport needs is an independent system that isn’t unified with all of the other security measures in place such as PIDs, security cameras and access control. Only when the data from all of these inputs is visualised in one place can an airport begin to make sense of its environment and enable a fast and efficient response to evolving challenges such as the insider threat and malicious drone activities. We fully expect airports to respond to this changing landscape, to help ensure a more comprehensive response.”