General aviation groups ask Congress to support flight-tracking privacy

by Sara M. Langston with the blog faculty Source: AOPA AOPA, the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA), and the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) sent a letter to Congressional leaders May 13 requesting support for a provision in the House FAA reauthorization bill that would preserve the congressionally enabled Block Aircraft Registration Request (BARR) program. The House and Senate are working out the differences in a long-term FAA bill, and the Senate FAA bill does not include the provision preserving the BARR program. The BARR program gives aircraft owners and operators the ability to "opt out" of having their aircraft's movements electronically broadcast to nongovernment entities by commercial flight-tracking services. In the letter, the associations pointed out that under the BARR program, the FAA, Department of Homeland Security, and law enforcement agencies always retain their ability to track general aviation aircraft movements, but GA operators are provided the ability to "opt out" of having their real-time private movements disseminated beyond the government to unknown third parties throughout the world. [Full story]

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