I was thinking about the current advancements in the world. How technology has really changed the manner in which we carry out security procedures in the society. Usage of drones in house surveillance has really changed in the current world. People no longer trust just human security guards. As much as most people have a tendency to fully rely on patrol guards to watch over their property, we can also be able to supplement the efforts of human beings with other technological machines.
Some of these technological machines include; CCTV cameras and drones. I was looking at a documentary on BBC TV where they showed how countries for example; China are now using advanced surveillance machinery to track people who have been infected with a certain illness. They were using it in conjunction with face recognition algorithms which can tell if someone has left their respective quarantine areas. It is really scary to think what would happen if such power can land into the wrong hands.
However if we can use some of this technological advancement such as drones to enhance our home security, it would go a long way in improving and deterring criminal activity.
There are several types of drones present in the market. I was looking at sunflower labs home security drones the other day that can deploy itself after you set how frequently it should patrol your compound. It comes in a box and when you open the box it has some container that looks like a futuristic pod. You then have to set the time when it should be patrolling your compound. When the time comes when it should be patrolling your compound, the pod opens itself and the drone deploys itself and goes around your property to see if there is any breach.
This is true from the Drones from sunflower Labs not from every other drone company. There are some people with ulterior motives who may want to use it to peep into other people’s houses. There was such a case that was reported some time ago where somebody used his drone to capture pictures of people taking a shower in their house and posted it online!
One of the affected people took him to court and after a long back and forth to and from the court, the case ended with the judge ruling in favour of the person who was operating the drone.
According to the judge, the lady who was affected was supposed to have her curtains or blinds on. The court ruling said that you are responsible for your own privacy and that if your curtains are not pulled and you let somebody peep inside your house, then the responsibility fully rests on you. It was a very controversial case and I personally do not agree with their findings but such are the times that we live in.
I was intrigued to see that the drone can patrol by itself and maintain the borders of your compound.
Can drones see in your house?
A lot of people have reservations on privacy when you talk about drones. I was pretty amazed to see that the drone manages to Patrol the borders of your home or property and maintains the camera in such a way that it does not capture anything outside the boundary of what is set. The drone simply makes sure that its camera is facing inwards into your property or where you have set it to patrol.
After it has done a few laps around your property and has not detected any heat signatures, it goes back to its pod to charge. If it senses any heat signatures, it will alert you through an app on your phone and let you know that there is a breach on your property. In case it is an animal, you can just see the surveillance footage from your phone to see if it is something worth looking into or calling for human back up to check.
How much does a security drone cost?
However some of the Drones that are in the market that can patrol by themselves and then return back to their pods automatically cost a small fortune. If you do not mind spending an average of 10,000 dollars, it is a worthwhile investment.
There are also other smaller drones that are used by the police to Patrol the borders of the Country and which you can also buy online which are much cheaper and can cost less than 500$.
Can police use drones for surveillance?
Yes they can. For example the police at Tijuana use drones to help them Patrol and look for illegal activities happening in the area. I was just watching one of those occasions where the police used a drone for surveillance on a suspected house that was hosting a criminal gang that was using the place to sell drugs.
The drone helped them to identify two suspects who were in that house without their knowledge and they used the recorded footage to set a sting operation which enabled them to nab the criminal gang.
There are also the huge drones used by the Federal Government and US Army to do long-range missile surveillance or attacks. These are very huge drones that look like small aircraft. They also cost an arm and a leg. I think one of the big ones cost an average of 18 million u.s. dollars!
Do not forget that they also have to pay for the yearly maintenance cost for the Drones plus the crew who are responsible for maintaining them.
Some estimates go as much as saying that it costs the US Federal Government about 360 million US Dollars a year just to maintain the drone program!
Some people say it is a waste of money other people say it is a worthwhile investment. You just have to weigh the pros and cons of both and make your own choice.
Other people also wonder how much weight can a drone carry?
The smaller drones like the phantom drones that you can also buy and use to capture video footage for your events and even just for fun can carry an average of 2.5 pounds.
People who tested this mentioned that whenever they wanted to go above 2.5 lbs the drone started overheating and notifying them that it will malfunction.
There are also other drone companies that have designed Big heavy duty drones that can be able to carry an average weight of 225 kg. That is about the weight of two average human adults.
In fact some of them have been showcasing some of their big heavy duty drones pulling a skier through the slopes of Norway and even lifting them off the ground for several feet above the ground!
Drone Surveillance Capabilites
The medium-sized drones are able to do surveillance for about 45 minutes before they have to come back to base to charge once again.
Therefore what other companies have designed their drones to do is to be connected to a CCTV camera system and installed sensors for example around the perimeter fence so that if there is any breach by somebody or an animal, the CCTV camera picks it up and relays it to the drone then the drone comes from its sleep mode and takes off to go and see what is happening around that area it was been notified of.
When the drone reaches the area where it has been notified that there has been a breach, it sends you an alert through your phone app or through a computer system that you have networked into the security system and then shows you if there is anybody in that area or if you need to take any action.
Others have also been specially designed not just for surveillance but to help in firefighting. They are very good in areas that human intervention may be impossible such as forest fires or very tall buildings.
How Can I Protect My Home from Drones?
The best way is to grow tall trees that will obstruct the vision of the camera that may be spying on you. The other alternative that you can use is to use reflective material around your house that will reflect back the suns rays on to the device and over expose the camera shots of whoever may be peeping into your house. This will make someone think twice before trying to use it on you again.
That may work during the day. At night however, you will have to resort to using very bright flash lights for the same effect.