Occasional Papers

Countering Unmanned Aerial Systems

Unmanned aerial systems (UAS) pose an evolving and substantial threat to Australia’s national security and the Australian Defence Force. While UAS use by a state or non‑state actor on Australian soil, or against Australia’s interests has yet to occur, it is only a matter of time before hostile actors will possess the capability to inflict harm upon Australia, its citizens and its national interests, if this is not already the case. Rapid advances in, and the proliferation of, increasingly more affordable technology, weaknesses in existing regulatory and legislative frameworks, the lack of an international framework of rules and norms for the use of UAS and the blurring of boundaries between sovereign and online communities, present a series of significant challenges to existing capabilities designed to counter the use of unmanned aerial systems by entities attacking Australia’s national interests and those of our regional partners

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