DJI, the global leader in aerial imaging technology and civilian drones, launched its new Local Data Mode for stopping internet traffic from going to and from the company’s DJI Pilot app, to provide its sensitive enterprise and government customers with improved data privacy assurances.
The next DJI Pilot app update for select Android tablets and CrystalSky will have Local Data Mode available. When Local Data Mode is activated by an operator, the app stops receiving or sending data across the internet. That adds an extra security layer for flight operators that involve government projects, critical infrastructure or other types of sensitive missions.
Brendan Schulman, the Vice President of DJI’s Policy and Legal Affairs, said that Local Data Mode is being created to address its enterprise customer needs, including both private and public organizations that use DJI technology for performing sensitive operations all over the world. He added that DJI is fully committed to ensuring that the privacy of customer flight logs, videos and photos are protected. Local Data Mode provides customers with extra sensitive data security needs with added assurances.
Since all internet data is blocked by Local Data Mode, the DJI Pilot app cannot detect the user’s location, or show the map or geofencing information like temporary flight restrictions and No Fly Zones. Also, drone operators will not receive firmware update notifications. Telemetry data for flight logs like speed, distance or altitude will stay stored in the aircraft when Local Data Mode is deactivated by the user.
Whether or not Local Data Mode gets activated, videos and photos that the user captures are stored at all times on the SD card of the drone, and shared only if the user decides to upload them online to social media, the SkyPixel community or other websites.
When drone operators use Local Data Mode, they are reminded of the fact that they are completely and solely responsible for their flight operation’s safety, along with the understanding that the features that might support and enhance the operations safety that rely on an internet connection, are not available any longer.
Local Data Mode can be enabled by drone operators through opening up the DJI Pilot app, and then clicking on the “Activate LDM Mode.” A password will then need to be entered which will be necessary in order to deactivate Local Data Mode whenever the user wants to once again go online.
New drones still need to be activated by the user logging into their DJI account using their email and password. To make sure the latest firmware is on the drone, it can be downloaded and updated while the user has internet connectivity still before Local Data Mode is re-activated.
Walter Stockwell, who is the Director of Technical Standards for DJI, says that DJI is moving to address the needs of its customers through getting Local Data Mode developed in order to provide them with enhanced data management options. He added that the company was pleased in being able to develop its Local Data Mode in its overall efforts to advocate for the interests of its customers.
The DJI Local Data Mode feature might not be available in areas where it is required to have an internet connection, or in regions with certain regulations. You can click here to download the DJI Pilot app.