We're not the only ones worried about the rise of 3D-printed guns. It sounds like the U.S. Department of Homeland Security is, too.
Fox News reported Thursday that the department sent out a bulletin to federal and state law enforcement agencies on Tuesday, warning about the dangers of 3D-printed guns:
Significant advances in three-dimensional (3D) printing capabilities, availability of free digital 3D printer files for firearms components, and difficulty regulating file sharing may present public safety risks from unqualified gun seekers who obtain or manufacture 3D printed guns.
The kicker is that there may not be much the government can do about it. "Limiting access may be impossible," the bulletin reportedly states.
Unfortunately, everything that the DHS worries about in this bulletin is more or less true. 3D-printed guns don't require a license to make or own, more and more are being designed and produced, and it's difficult to find them with metal detectors if the guns don't have a significant amount of metal, as required by law. The Department of Homeland Security did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Huffington Post.
This may be just the beginning for the 3D-printed weapon industry, as we recently discovered. Now people are manufacturing bullets in their homes on their 3D printers.
The technology is in its early stages; the first 3D-printed gun, the "Liberator," can only fire one bullet before it needs to be reloaded. Still, 3D-printed gun enthusiasts are insistent. When the U.S. State Department forced Defense Distributed, the firm that designed the plans for the Liberator, to take the gun's blueprints off of its website, they just ended up back on the Internet at Pirate Bay.