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Arlington, Va. (Dec. 16, 2021) – Today, the Aerospace Industries Association (AIA) announced a new industry standard to strengthen national security and preserve critical American infrastructure by protecting data of small unmanned aircraft system (known as “UAS” or drones). The standard, NAS9948 Unmanned Aircraft System Data Protection and Privacy, provides guidance to manufacturers and developers on reducing the risk of exploitation and dissemination of sensitive UAS data, including data that supports government, military systems, first responders, public utilities, and transportation.

“We are committed to doing our part as an industry to strengthen national security and protect critical American infrastructure,” said David Silver, AIA’s Vice President of Civil Aviation. “Because of the guidance in this standard, UAS manufacturers and developers can better protect data that supports government, military systems, and public utilities and transportation.”

The standard was created in collaboration with AIA member companies, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate as well as other government agencies, and MITRE before being approved by AIA’s Emerging Technologies Committee.

AIA has been developing and publishing standards for the global aerospace market since 1941. For more information on AIA’s standards program, please visit AIA’s National Aerospace Standard NAS9948 is available for purchase here.


National Aerospace Standard NAS9948, Unmanned Aircraft System Data Protection and Privacy:

  • Provides guidance for small UAS manufacturers, original equipment manufacturers (OEM), and software developers for the protection and privacy of data throughout the lifecycle of the UAS.
  • Assists with reducing the risk of data exploitation and dissemination of private information while operating a UAS that weighs less than 55 pounds.
  • Identifies 14 security controls specific to data security and privacy in accordance with NIST 800-53 Rev 5, Security and Privacy Controls for Information Systems and Organizations, including securing data-at-rest and data-in-transit, and provides UAS-specific guidance and discussion for each security control.
  • Makes users aware of how their data is secured while also allowing users to make informed decisions on the security and protection of their data based on their risk tolerance and mission needs.


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