Although the technology industry is no stranger to security robots, San Francisco-based startup Aptonomy has developed a security drone, which can fly around the outside of your property, spotting anything untoward.

The autonomous drone features night vision cameras, so it can detect if any strangers are hanging around your property and it’s also equipped with a battery that can charge itself, so there’s not the usual panic of it running out of juice before its job is done.

They are operated by a smartphone and will patrol a property, following a route set by the operator. If it detects any activity, a drone will be dispatched to explore the area in more detail, sending footage back to the operator. They have integrated facial recognition so human guards are able to see whether the intruder is known or unknown.

“[The drones] tirelessly patrol outside your property around the clock, and actively deter crime by establishing physical presence at the site,” Aptonomy said. “[Smart] drones live on your property, and get to know it well. In a live monitoring scenario, you can adjust the drone’s viewpoint and move it around safety in real-time – even from hundreds of miles away.”

Aptonomy’s technology is integrated into DJI S-1000+ drones, which is one of the top choices for film makers. However, they are pretty expensive, so don’t expect to be buying up a couple of these to patrol your semi-detached home.

In fact, the drones have been designed for use by companies that may have super-secure premises, such as research facilities, prisons, power plants and refineries.

Aptonomy expects its drones to become available for lease by 2017, although the company hasn’t hinted at how much they will cost or if they will be available for big budget companies to buy outright.