(Source: CBSLocal.com, Los Angeles)
An advertising company has been utilizing drones experimentally to monitor cellular and Wi-Fi signals across the San Fernando Valley, according to a new report.
As CBS2’s Erica Nochlin reports, the small drones are apparently buzzing around the Valley and have reportedly been monitoring signals all month long to pinpoint the location of mobile devices and their owners, according to VentureBeat.
“The idea that there are drones flying around, that’s kinda terrifying,” said one resident in reacting to this report. “Invasion. Invasion of privacy.”
According to Nochlin, AdNear is the marketing company that’s responsible and says it’s only an experiment for now, but one day those drones could be used to send out location-based ads faster.
The company says users remain anonymous and said in a statement: “We do not push any messages but show in-app ads that are highly relevant to the user’s location and/or profile. This in-turn is useful to the user as they get meaningful, engaging ads.”
“Is that where it’s gonna stop? Are they gonna be watching us next?” one man asked.
Jared Hoffen with Drones Plus said drones are not to blame as they are only transporting existing technology.
“With camera phones and what we have going on, privacy has been out the door for a while,” Hoffen said.
Alan is serial entrepreneur, active angel investor, and a drone enthusiast. He co-founded DRONELIFE.com to address the emerging commercial market for drones and drone technology. Prior to DRONELIFE.com, Alan co-founded Where.com, ThinkingScreen Media, and Nurse.com. Recently, Alan has co-founded Crowditz.com, a leader in Equity Crowdfunding Data, Analytics, and Insights. Alan can be reached at alan(at)dronelife.com