Unmanned aerial vehicles, commonly referred to as UAVs or drones, became part of our conversations as the military increased their use during the conflicts in Iraq and Afganistan.
Now drones are increasingly being used for work in law enforcement. Dozens of US police forces have applied to the FAA for UAV permits. As of August 2013, commercial unmanned aerial system (UAS) licenses were granted on a case-by-case basis.
Drones have been developed for aerial surveying of crops, filmmaking, search and rescue, pipeline inspections, medical delivery to remote areas and more. Potential for abuse from aerial surveillance, however, abounds. In February 2013, Seattle Mayor Michael McGinn scrapped the Seattle Police Department's plan to deploy UAVs in response to protests.