Business

Forget national security: Drones are the latest scandal at the World Cup

Above: The Maracanã stadium in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Image Credit: Flickr/Digo_Souza

Along with Edward Snowden, the NSA, and wars, drones are the hottest topic in national security these days.

The French national soccer team, currently participating in this year’s World Cup championship in Brazil, reported seeing a drone flying near its training grounds last week, according to Football Italia. It is believed to potentially have been sent by another team in an attempt to spy on its tactics and playbook, or even by French media attempting to spy on closed training sessions.

During a press conference, French team manager Didier Deschamps said, “Apparently drones are used more and more. It’s not up to me. FIFA handles this and has been carrying out an inquiry; we don’t want any intrusion into our privacy. It’s very hard to fight this these days,” as noted in The Guardian. The manager has asked FIFA, the confederation presiding over the World Cup, to investigate, which is it said to be doing.

At the time, France had yet to play its first game against the Honduras, which happened this past Sunday. However, contrary to some rumors, the drone was not Honduran but belonged to a hobbyist, who wanted to have some fun and watch the French team’s practice, BFMTV reported.

Because he was flying his drone without authorization in the Brazilian airspace, he could be charged for doing so.

Brazilian police used a drone themselves to secure Rio de Janeiro ahead of hosting the World Cup. In March, the city’s police used a Heron drone equipped with a heat-sensing camera to catch Little P, a notorious Brazilian drug lord. The Heron drone is manufactured by Israeli company Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), according to a report from Bloomberg. Police intelligence officer Adriano Barbosa tracked Little P for almost a month until the bust on March 26.

 

 

 


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