A little-known pilot program is putting facial recognition technology in the hands of law enforcement. For some, it represents a radical milestone in militarization on U.S. soil.
Local Law Enforcement
Law enforcement agencies across the U.S. have expanded their surveillance activities with new technologies and techniques.
Policing on camera
A federal judge ruled that the New York Police Department’s stop-and-frisk policy was unconstitutional because it resulted in discriminatory practices and unreasonable searches. Alexis Karteron, senior staff attorney with the New York Civil Liberties Union, discusses the ruling.
Oakland surveillance center progresses amid debate on privacy, data collection
Local officials are pushing forward with a federally funded project to link surveillance cameras, license-plate readers, gunshot detectors, Twitter feeds, alarm notifications and other data into a unified “situational awareness” tool for law enforcement.
License-plate readers let police collect millions of records on drivers
At a rapid pace, and mostly hidden from the public, police agencies throughout California have been collecting millions of records on drivers and feeding them to intelligence fusion centers operated by local, state and federal law enforcement.
Amid drone debate, police spend millions on spy planes
A Pilatus PC-12 NG Spectre in flight.Pilatus Aircraft Ltd. While the nation disputes if, when and where the government should use drones over U.S. soil, Texas state police are taking their surveillance efforts to the next level. In a little-noticed July purchase, officials at the Texas Department of Public Safety inked a $7.4 million contract […]
Private companies pitch Web surveillance tools to police
Surfing the InternetBrian Lane Winfield Moore/Flickr Private tech firms have found a new market for their sophisticated software capable of analyzing vast segments of the Internet – local police departments looking for ways to pre-empt the next mass shooting or other headline-grabbing event. Twitter, Facebook and other popular sites are 24-hour fire hoses of raw […]
Police, lobbyists defeat bill to regulate license-plate scanners
Security guards at the Arden Fair mall in Sacramento see this visual interface after digitally scanning a license plate.Courtesy of Steve Reed Under pressure from law enforcement lobbyists and private industry, a California lawmaker has abandoned his effort to restrict how personal information on the whereabouts of drivers generated from high-tech license-plate scanners can be […]
Court decision on police GPS spying lacks clarity, experts say
DNY59/istockphoto.com A critical Supreme Court ruling at the intersection of modern technology and privacy leaves open whether police can still track the car or cell phone of a suspect without threatening their constitutional rights, according to a new report [PDF] from the Congressional Research Service. Investigators in 2004 secretly affixed a tracking device to the car […]