People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) announced the launch of their long-planned drone program last week, and some already have methods in place to prevent drone surveillance. While it remains to be seen whether the organization can get its members to “enroll” in the project, a start-up company is offering outdoorsmen and women an alternative to keeping an eye on the sky. DroneShield, a crowd-funded technology firm, has created a device to let you know if a drone is near.
Drones, or unmanned aerial vehicles, emit common acoustic signatures that the DroneShield device is capable of picking up, alerting the user to a drone being nearby. The device is also capable of detecting similar remote-controlled vehicles such as hobby helicopters and planes. For now, DroneShield is available in a stationary device priced at around $100, but the designers hope to eventually release a mobile version at the much lower price tag of $20.
“Worried about harassment from environmental and activist groups? Carry DroneShield on your belt clip, attach to a tree stand, leave behind in the parking lot, or mount on your fishing vessel,” DroneShield states on its website.
According to PC Magazine, DroneShield is currently working with several hunting lodges across the country to install these devices. DroneShield’s products will not interfere with or damage consumer-model drones, like the PETA Air Angels, but will detect the vehicles far before human ears hear them.
“Could you sit out there and listen for a drone?” DroneShield founder Brian Hearing asked WNPR news. “Possibly, if you know what you’re listening for. The benefit of using a computer to do this: it’s on 24/7; you can set it around the perimeter of your property to give you enough warning when one’s coming.”
Hearing told PC Magazine that while PETA’s drone program may be legal, using the vehicles to spy on hunters is a “very complicated” gray area.