Richard Hughes & Mark Fower
Drone Seeker is a division of Max WiFi, an event intellectual property (IP) and internet provider which has specialised in delivering event networks around the world for the past 13 years.
Richard Hughes, director of Max WiFi and Mark Fower, head of Airspace Security, could see that the increase in popularity and use of drones would pose an incredible security risk. Due to ever-evolving security measures such as concrete barricades, bag and person searches and fencing, it’s now very difficult to get anything into a venue or event unless you have a drone.
Intrusion by drone carries a potential risk when considering threats such as drugs, contraband, filming, surveillance, disruption and more serious acts that can easily be deployed from a distance by utilising a cheap “off-the-shelf” drone.
Legislation has failed to keep up with technology and there is very little that can be done to stop a drone when it’s in the air. The focus therefore needs to be on early warning and planning to protect and act when a threat has been identified.
The Drone Seeker solution uses globally recognised, market-leading technology which can identify the moment a remote control is turned on and can not only track the drone pilot, but also identify the type of drone and plot its flight path. In an open area such as a festival site, the technology allows visibility out to a distance of around 1.5 kilometres.
Targets and threats are discussed and agreed with event security well ahead of the event. As threats are identified and tracked, the Drone Seeker team produces a strategic plan and works with event security to ensure that agreed responses are actioned quickly.