Skydroid Contracted by British Government to Prevent Drone-Smuggling in U.K. Prisons

The British Government has taken active measures to curb drone-assisted smuggling of contraband into U.K. prisons.

Michal Fludra/NurPhoto via Getty Images

U.K. company Skydroid Ltd. has won a bid to help the British Government curb the frequency of unmanned aerial vehicles being used to successfully smuggle contraband into prisons. 

While we’ve had quite the share of this problem in the United States, it’s interesting to actually witness a governmental entity enlist a company to resolve the disconcerting issue. Though Skydroid’s website currently looks rather elementary and provides no information besides it being in progress, this announcement will presumably lead to Skydroid implementing counter-drone technology in England’s most drone-inflicted correctional facilities. 

According to The Telegraph, the Ministry of Justice awarded the Salisbury-based company £237,000 (about $328,119) to handle the issue. If you’re unaware of this modern plight regarding aerial trespassing at prisons and borders, even private homes, there’s been an influx of rogue UAVs in the past year, used to smuggle cell phones, drugs, and weapons into correctional facilities. The British Government is clearly ready to tackle this pervasive problem and keen on ridding the airspace above its prisons from drones delivering dangerous or illegal contraband to inmates. Just last year, it allocated £7 million ($9,694,370) to find an entity capable of delivering a solution to this troubling series of violations.

As The Telegraph reports, Skydroid is likely to begin testing out its anti-drone technology, which is yet unspecified, on April 1. We hope, for the sake of potentially affected correctional officers and the integrity of the facilities they guard, that this isn’t merely an April Fool’s joke, but the beginning of a reliable, counter-drone standard for facilities across the globe. After all, it’s important for officers to be absolutely certain that the inmates they come into contact with on a regular basis aren’t armed with knives or other weapons unexpectedly smuggled into the facility via drone. 

While there isn’t much information regarding Skydroid’s history or how it plans to approach the government’s counter-UAV assignment, the company has reportedly assisted the Police and Crime Commissioner for Surrey, the Surrey Constabulary, and the Crown Commercial Service. Perhaps it was the work accomplished in those particular incidences, that proved impressive enough for the government to contract Skydroid to handle this issue in a large-scale manner. Stay tuned as we learn more and report on developments.