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CISA Drone Report- SME Review

CISA Drone Report- SME Review

By: M20 Associates Subject Matter Experts

December 2020

The Department of Homeland Security's Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) recently published a report titled “Protecting Against the Threat of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS).” The CISA report provides an overview of the growing UAS threat and offers vulnerability assessments and recommendations on how critical infrastructure can be defended against unmanned threats from above.

The report does not describe methods for jamming or disabling drones but focuses on mitigation. The document provides guidance to security professionals responsible for “facilities in the United States occupied by federal employees for non-military activities.”

It notes that many UAS threat events are accidental, and that potential adversaries can employ UAS for hostile surveillance, smuggling, disrupting governmental operations, or even weaponization.

As unmanned aerial systems become more capable and available, the possibility of rogue operators, terrorist groups, or criminal actors causing immense damage or disruption is growing. Assassination by drone is already a major issue in some areas of the world. M20 Associates previously published an article on Drug Cartels using drones as bomb delivery devices used in assassinations.

So far, neither UAS defenses nor law enforcement protocols have caught up with the rapid expansion in drone availability and capability. Hopefully, it will not take a major drone attack on U.S. soil for policymakers to recognize and respond to the rapidly evolving threat accordingly.

Some of the strategies the UAS report mentions include:

  • Posting “No Drone” signage at facilities and potential LLO sites

  • Publishing “deterrent communications” on social media and public websites

  • Implementing Temporary Flight Restrictions or Special Security Instructions

  • Increasing workforce awareness of UAS

  • Checking facilities for UAS or items delivered by a UAS

  • Concealing or disguising assets, including using non-transparent screens, exterior foliage, and covering any exterior screens

  • Using privacy films and blinds at a minimum 45-degree angle

  • Reconfiguring rooms to reduce surveillance vulnerabilities

  • Relocating important assets as far away from perimeters as possible

  • Using nets or grilles as physical barriers around important assets



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