The Pentagon is flying more drone missions along America’s border

Since 2006, the Department of Homeland Security has operated its own fleet of Reaper drones, referred to instead as Predator B drones. Between 2011 and 2016, DHS drones totaled 31,000 flight hours, of which 19,000 were spent patrolling the southwest border of the United States. Customs and Border Protection continues to hire pilots for these drones, and DHS is exploring the role of smaller drones in watching the border. (In 2018, the Office of Inspector General at DHS found the department’s drone operations lacked both data security and privacy protections.)

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