15:30 GMT13 April 2021
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    Commercial drones and drones used for hobby could increasingly be weaponized to carry out chemical, biological or kamikaze-style attacks, according to a Center for a New American Security report published on Wednesday.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The report noted the proliferation of drones and advances in technology present a unique dilemma to US national security as both state- and non-state actors will gain potentially deadly access to inexpensive drones.

    “Over time, hobbyist drone capabilities will become increasingly accessible to non-state actors and individuals and increasingly sophisticated — ultimately approaching currently available small military-grade capabilities.”

    As sales of drones used for hobby increase, the report said, there like will be a reduction in cost and increase in drone capabilities.

    “This development will in turn grant individuals and non-state actors – particularly those without existing state patrons — unprecedented access to highly advanced technologies,” which can be used for surveillance or be weaponized.

    “Even without missiles or releasable bombs, drones can be used as cheap precision-guided weapons to disperse chemical or biological payloads or simply to strike targets with explosives.”

    If used in large numbers, non-state actors could also use inexpensive hobby drones in massive “attacks against government, military and civilian targets.”

    Drones are generally divided in four categories — small hobby drones, commercial drones, large military drones and stealth military drones.

    Military drones are exclusive to states, but the purchase of hobby drones and commercial drones is unregulated. A hobby drone can be purchased for anywhere from $100 to a few thousand dollars.

    The Center for a New American Security is a Washington, DC-based think tank. The Center’s mission is to help develop pragmatic and principled US national security and defense policies, according to the organization’s website.

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