With nearly 100,000 views, YouTuber NS films&editing uploaded an illegal drone flight video of Israelian passenger planes flying by! Over 95% of the people who voted on the video down voted it because it is illegal! Not only did NS films&editing show off his DJI Mavic Pro filming airplanes dangerously close, but he also highlighted himself in his own video. 20-year old Niv Stobenzki aimed to gain views on his YouTube account, and he certainly did. The drone community and another drone YouTuber named NeverMindYourOwn condemned the pilot. Niv was not immediately arrested, but he was later found with the help of social media. On July 17, 2017, Israel National News reported that he was interrogated, sentenced for house arrest for 5 days, and his drone, computer, and cell phone ended up being all confiscated.
What’s the Problem?
Niv flew his drone next to numerous airplanes that were flying in to land. Unauthorized drone filming, especially that close, is automatically a threat to the people on board the plane and everyone in the surrounding area. According to BBC, DJI said, “[that they] stand ready to assist national aviation authorities as they investigate a recent wave of photos and videos showing clear and intentional lawbreaking in ways that pose real danger to manned air traffic.”
Illegal Drone Flight
NeverMindYourOwn called out Niv in his video. Niv replied and said that he wasn’t flying in a NFZ (no-fly-zone), and his video was actually zoomed in. NeverMindYourOwn then linked a NFZ map to Niv, and it showed that the DJI Mavic Pro was in fact flying an illegal drone flight! This means that his drone must have been hacked to bypass DJI’s geofencing system. DJI hacks are a controversial issue, and these kinds of incidences are the reason why Niv’s video was frowned upon. Niv even angered the hackers with his illegal drone flight because he gave drones a bad reputation. Sometimes DJI lags with allowing UAVs to fly in restricted areas approved by the local airport. Ideally, hackers use the NFZ hack to legally fly in areas with proper clearance, but Niv clearly had no business flying there.
Many people have actually been caught operating in an illegal drone flight, but NS films&editing made the mistake of showing his face in his own public video. DJI hacks are gaining notorious attention right now. This guy’s actions just gave DJI more reason to further restrict drone functionality. 5 days house arrest might seem lenient compared to the jail time he was predicted to get. Regardless, the police from Israel and the media from all around the world are making an example out of Niv’s hacked drone flight!