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NOAA to Implement ‘Tiered’ Approach for Commercial Sensing Data Protection Review

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration will adopt a three-tier approach to assess data protection plans from commercial entities seeking license to operate remote sensing satellite systems, SpaceNews reported Wednesday.

A NOAA advisory panel composed of government, academic and industry professionals recommended the tiered approach that the agency intends to begin using this fall.

Tahara Dawkins, director of commercial remote sensing regulatory affairs at NOAA, told SpaceNews in an email the first category will cover systems that do not risk the loss of sensitive data and only pose a minimal impact of space vehicle control loss.

She added the second category will focus on sensor-equipped systems that generate distributable data considered as superior to foreign sources.

The third category will cover systems that store very sensitive data that may pose national security and foreign policy risks if disseminated improperly, according to Dawkins.

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