Over the past several weeks, three significant articles have appeared in the popular press highlighting different aspects of the two-edge sword that is Automatic License Plate Readers (ALPR). Each of these discussions has addressed a different issue: IRS use of the technology, potential violations of citizen's rights, and efforts to keep the police from talking about the technology and associated data practices. Those stories and more, below:
(Bloomberg, April 16, 2014)
(Watchdog.org, April 14, 2014)
(Wired, May 1, 2014)
(Products, Vigilant Website)
Comment: Although this technology clearly has the potential to benefit the "common good", that will only be the case going forward if it is used in a way that meets two standards: transparency and accountability. Short of that, and lacking robust legislative efforts to address the related individual rights issues, the Law Enforcement community has a public relations time bomb ticking in its midst.
Graphic credit: Vigilant Solutions