Soon you will be a lot less anonymous as a drone pilot than you are now. From 2024, it is mandatory to have your drone broadcast some data, including the current position, altitude, location of take-off, and the operator number. In principle, this data can be collected by anyone in the vicinity with a smartphone. There is even an app that works as a kind of ‘flight radar for drones.’ But how does that app work and what are the implications?

Note: this article is written with the European drone regulations for Drone ID in mind!

Remote ID

Are you flying in Open category A1 or A2? Then your drone will have to comply with a standard for Remote ID from 1-1-2024. This means that the drone continuously transmits some data during the flight utilizing radio signals (Wi-Fi and/or Bluetooth), such as the current position and flight altitude, flight speed, the location of the pilot, and the operator number.

The goal is to enable enforcers to see who owns a particular drone….