U.S. Department of Interior UU. Attack drones made in China
WASHINGTON: The US Department of Interior UU. He has grounded his fleet of Chinese-made drones while conducting a program review.
Nick Goodwin, a spokesman for the Department of the Interior, did not provide a reason for the decision, but it comes amid US security concerns about Chinese electronics.
Goodwin said the review had been ordered by the Secretary of the Interior Department, David Bernhardt.
Until this review is completed, the Secretary has ordered that drones made in China or made with Chinese components be grounded, he said.
Exceptions will be made for drones that are used for emergency purposes, such as fighting forest fires, searching and rescuing, and dealing with natural disasters, Goodwin said.
According to sources familiar with the program, the Department of the Interior has a fleet of 810 drones, almost all built by Chinese companies.
Only 24 are American-made and even those have Chinese electronic components, sources said.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security UU. He issued a warning in May that drones made in China could pose a security risk.
The United States has also taken action against China Huawei by effectively prohibiting US companies from selling or transferring US technology to the Chinese telecommunications giant.
US intelligence believes Huawei is backed by the Chinese military and that its equipment could provide Beijing's spy agencies with a backdoor into the networks of other countries.
The Chinese company DJI produces about 70 percent of the world's commercial drones.
We are very disappointed, a DJI spokeswoman told AFP, adding that the company had no other comment for now.
The Pentagon has banned the military from using DJI drones for security reasons since 2017.