A bill recently introduced in the U.S. Senate Sponsored by Senator James Lankford (R-OK), S.1443 , titled the Protecting the Border from Unmanned Aircraft Systems Act, require an interagency strategy for creating a unified posture on counter-unmanned aircraft systems (C–UAS) capabilities and protections at international borders of the United States.

Within 180 days from the date of the Act’s enactment, the Secretary of Homeland Security, in collaboration with the Attorney General, the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration, the Secretary of State, the Secretary of Energy, the Director of National Intelligence, and the Secretary of Defense, shall establish a strategy to develop a unified approach on capabilities and protections related to counter-unmanned aircraft systems at:

  • Covered facilities or assets along the international borders of the United States; and
  • Any other border-adjacent facilities or assets at which such capabilities may be utilized under federal law

The strategy required to be developed by the interagency group will require the following elements:

  • An examination of C–UAS capabilities at covered facilities or assets along the border, or such other border-adjacent facilities or assets at which such capabilities may be utilized under Federal law, and their usage to detect or mitigate credible threats to homeland security, including the facilitation of illicit activities, or for other purposes authorized by law.
  • An examination of efforts to protect privacy and civil liberties in the context of C–UAS operations, including with respect to impacts on border communities and protections of the First and Fourth Amendments to the United States Constitution.
  • An examination of unmanned aircraft system tactics, techniques, and procedures being used in the border environment by malign actors to include how unmanned aircraft systems are acquired, modified, and utilized to conduct malicious activity such, as attacks, surveillance, conveyance of contraband, or other forms of threats.
  • An assessment of the C–UAS systems necessary to identify illicit activity and protect against the threats from unmanned aircraft systems at international borders of the United States, including the availability, feasibility, and interoperatbility of C–UAS.
  • A description of the training required or recommended at international borders of the United States, including how such training:
    • Fits into broader training standards and norms; and
    • Relates to the protection of privacy and civil liberties.
  • Recommendations for additional authorities and resources to protect against illicit unmanned aircraft systems, including systems that may be necessary to detect illicit activity and mitigate credible threats along international borders of the United States.
  • An assessment of interagency research and development efforts, including the potential for expanding such efforts.

The Act requires a strategy to be submitted to Congress within one year of the date of the enactment of the Act, and yearly briefings thereafter for the next seven years. The annual report may include a classified annex describing the resources necessary to carry out the strategy developed and any significant developments related to the elements described above.

Text from the proposed legislation is attached below.

Become a C-UAS Hub Member! Access is free and requires a simple registration process. You’ll have access to our expanding resource library and be signed up for the weekly newsletter. For more information, please visit the C-UAS Hub Membership page.

Post Image- West Texas near the U.S. – Mexico border (Image Credit: envatoelements by photovs)