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Experts Say Drones Pose a National Security Threat -- and We Aren't Ready

TIME - Tech

Last fourth of July, as fireworks burst across the night sky near the Lieber Correctional Institution in Ridgeville, S.C., convicted kidnapper Jimmy Causey tucked a lifelike dummy into his bed, sneaked out of his prison cell and completed a daring escape. It wasn't until three days later, when Texas Rangers found Causey holed up 1,200 miles away, that authorities offered an explanation for how he had obtained the equipment for the breakout, including a pair of wire cutters used to snip through four fences that encircle the maximum security prison. "We believe a drone was used to fly in the tools that allowed him to escape," Bryan Stirling, director of the South Carolina Department of Corrections, told reporters at a news conference. A lengthy investigation confirmed that an accessory role was played by a small, off-the-shelf drone. And with that, law-enforcement and national security officials added "prison breaks" to the potential ill uses lurking in a technology widely available at retailers including Amazon and Walmart.