U.S. Army Tells Units To Stop Using DJi Drones

The U.S. Army has ordered units to cease the use of DJI drones, according to a memo obtained by sUAS News.

The letter, dated this week, said the U.S. Army Research Lab and U.S. Navy found there were operational risks linked to DJI equipments. Officials cited a classified report called “DJI UAS Technology Threat and User Vulnerabilities,” as well as a U.S. Navy memorandum called “Operational Risks with Regards to DJI Family of Products.” The report and the memo were both dated May 2017, which suggests officials have been looking into this for a while.

Read: UK Rules Require Owners To Register Their Drones And Take Safety Tests

In the letter, the U.S. Army’s Lieutenant General Joseph Anderson said:

“DJI Unmanned Aircraft Systems [UAS] products are the most widely used non-program of record commercial off-the-shelf UAS employed by the Army. The Army Aviation Engineering Directorate has issued over 300 separate Airworthiness Releases for DJI products in support of multiple organisations with a variety of mission sets. Due to increased awareness of cyber vulnerabilities associated with DJI products, it is directed that the US Army halt use of all DJI products.”

The Army ordered its units to halt the use of DJI products, including all of the company’s unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV). The rule also applies to other items from the manufacturer, including flight computers, cameras, radios, batteries, speed controllers, GPS units, handheld control stations, and devices with DJI software applications installed. Officials also directed members to uninstall all DJI applications, remove battery and storage media from devices and to secure all equipment.

Read: Inmate In South Carolina Prison Escapes Using Tools Dropped Off By Drone, Cell Phone

DJI told International Business Times it was surprised about the Army’s decision.

The company said in a statement:

“People, businesses and governments around the world rely on DJI’s products and technology for a variety of uses including sensitive and mission critical operations. The Department of the Army memo even reports that they have ‘issued over 300 separate Airworthiness Releases for DJI products in support of multiple organizations with a variety of mission sets.’

We are surprised and disappointed to read reports of the U.S. Army’s unprompted restriction on DJI drones as we were not consulted during their decision. We are happy to work directly with any organization, including the U.S. Army, that has…

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