Press Esc to close
Monday 01 September 2014
News updated at 1:10 PM IST
Weather
Max: 27.4°C
Min : 19.4°C
In Bangalore
Sunny day

Drones used in US for surveillance: FBI chief

Washington, Jun 20, 2013 (PTI):
File image: Reuters

The FBI has for the first time acknowledged that it uses drone aircraft domestically for surveillance in a "very minimal way", even as the Obama administration grapples with the fallout from the public disclosure of its covert spying programmes.

FBI Director Robert Mueller said the law enforcement agency uses unmanned drones within the country for surveillance in certain difficult cases.

Mueller told the Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday that drones are used by the FBI in a "very, very minimal way and very seldom."


He did not say how many unmanned surveillance vehicles (UAVs) the FBI has or how often they have been used.

But CNN quoted a law enforcement official as saying that the FBI has used them a little more than a dozen times but did not say when that started.

The official said drones are useful in hostage and barricade situations because they operate more quietly and are less visible than traditional aircraft such as helicopters.

The FBI said it used a UAV earlier this year to monitor the situation where a boy was held hostage in a bunker in Alabama.

FBI spokesman Paul Bresson said their use allows "us to learn critical information that otherwise would be difficult to obtain without introducing serious risk to law enforcement personnel."

Bresson said the aircraft can only be used to perform surveillance on stationary subjects and the FBI must first get approval from the Federal Aviation Administration to fly in a "very confined geographic area."

Mueller's comments come as the Obama administration is trying to wriggle out of the political fallout from the public disclosure of surveillance programmes, which has triggered new debate over reach of national security vs. privacy rights.

President Barack Obama has assured Americans the government is not listening to their phone conversations or reading their e-mail.

Go to Top

Photo Gallery
Vehicles ply on a waterlogged road after heavy rains in Bhopal on...

Vehicles ply on a waterlogged road after heavy rains in Bhopal on...

Amitabh, Aishwarya and Abhishek Bachchan visit Lalbagucha Raja Mandal at Lalbaug in Mumbai on...

Amitabh, Aishwarya and Abhishek Bachchan visit Lalbagucha Raja Mandal at Lalbaug in Mumbai on...

Rabbi Moshe Gourarie from New Jersey looks at a wall riddled with bullet marks from the 2008...

Rabbi Moshe Gourarie from New Jersey looks at a wall riddled with bullet marks from the 2008...

Childrens walks with an umbrella as it rains at Rajpath in New Delhi on Sunday....

Childrens walks with an umbrella as it rains at Rajpath in New Delhi on Sunday....

Bollywood actor Hrithik Roshan with father Rakesh Roshan and others participates in a procession...

Bollywood actor Hrithik Roshan with father Rakesh Roshan and others participates in a procession...

Devotees immerse idols of Ganesha into a lake in Thane , Mumbai on Saturday.

Devotees immerse idols of Ganesha into a lake in Thane , Mumbai on Saturday.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his visit to the Golden Pavillion Temple in Kyoto, Japan on...

Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his visit to the Golden Pavillion Temple in Kyoto, Japan on...

Bollywood actor Amisha Patel and family members participates in a procession for the immersion...

Bollywood actor Amisha Patel and family members participates in a procession for the immersion...

Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a meeting with CEO of Nidec Corporation, Shigenobu Nagamari...

Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a meeting with CEO of Nidec Corporation, Shigenobu Nagamari...

Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a meeting with Kyoto Mayor Daisaku Kadokawa in Kyoto, Japan...

Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a meeting with Kyoto Mayor Daisaku Kadokawa in Kyoto, Japan...

Copyright 2014, The Printers (Mysore) Private Ltd., 75, M.G Road, Post Box 5331, Bangalore - 560001
Tel: +91 (80) 25880000 Fax No. +91 (80) 25880523