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Bills Aim To Protect Privacy As Drone Age Dawns

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California lawmakers are attempting to address privacy concerns as pilotless aircraft are being considered for a wide range of uses.

Drones make it faster and cheaper to gather information, like when tracking fleeing suspects or monitoring crowds. But some lawmakers say the increased access they provide could be exploited without proper regulations.

Several bills in the Legislature would set penalties for privacy violations and require law enforcement agencies to obtain a warrant in non-emergency situations before deploying drone aircraft. One bill is scheduled for a Senate Public Safety Committee hearing on Tuesday.

FAA officials estimate that as many as 30,000 unmanned aircraft could be buzzing through the country’s sky by 2030.

Law enforcement officials and other supporters say demand for the aircraft has been misunderstood.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

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