DJI is the most well-known company in the consumer quadcopter market, and their business has exploded over the last five years as drone technology improves and general pricing gets more affordable.
Since the technology has become so advanced, even the Army has been utilizing DJI models sold right off the shelf for military operations like reconnaissance, engineering support, communications and fire support.
While they Army gained great functionality out of these consumer drones for a small cost, a recent memo urged all Army personnel to immediately stop all use of DJI products via the following order: “cease all use, uninstall all DJI applications, remove all batteries/storage media from devices, and secure equipment for follow on direction”.
The reason for this sudden change is that a classified Army Research Laboratory report from May 2017 found an “increased awareness of cyber vulnerabilities associated with DJI products,” meaning they basically can be hacked, tampered with or compromised by third parties.
A DJI representative confirmed that they would be reaching out to the Army to confirm the memo is indeed real and to help better understand these “cyber vulnerabilities” that they referenced.