• The Police State and License Plate Scanners

    May 18, 2016

    Tags: , ,
    Posted in: Democracy, Post-Constitution America

    google car

    One of the latest tools for violating our privacy and creating the American police state are license plate scanners.

    Watching You

    This technology allows the police to cruise through a city at normal speed and photographically gather images of vehicle license plates, along with geolocation data. This is all stored, and can easily be used to create a record of everywhere your car has been. Coupled with cellphone and WiFi data being collected along with its own geodata, and tied to things like tracked credit card activity, emails and the now-ubiquitous public surveillance cameras, it is very, very easy for law enforcement to know where you are, where you have been and have a pretty good idea of what you were doing.

    Run that same process for lots and lots of people, and you can also tell who spent time with who.


    Vigilant Solutions

    Expand that process nationwide and you truly have a police state.

    How to do that? Contact a private company called Vigilant Solutions. They collect license plate scanning information from multiple police departments as well as their own network of private plate scanners and facial recognition/facial cataloging technology and then sell it in database form to law enforcement.

    The Vigilant database is massive, with over 2.2 billion location data points, and it is growing by almost a million data points per day. The database means, for example, that the New York police can now monitor you and your car whether you live in New York, Miami, Chicago, Los Angeles, or elsewhere.

    The database also boasts a full suite data analytics tools which allow police officers to track cars historically or in real time, conduct a virtual stakeout, figure out which cars are commonly seen in close proximity to each other, and predict likely locations to find a car.

    Data, once collected, can exist forever. Whatever it is being used for now, it will also be available for other uses in the future, enhanced by new exploitive technology.

    As Vigilant puts it on its website, “Data is cumbersome; intelligence is actionable.”


    Let’s Google It

    All that is quite dangerous enough. However, the latest wrinkle is that the police in at least one city are going as far as disguising their license plate scanning vehicle as an innocent Google Maps truck. You don’t even know your location information is being gathered this way.

    Matt Blaze, a University of Pennsylvania computer and information science professor, noticed an SUV tucked away in the shadows of the Philadelphia Convention Center, bearing a logo for Google Maps. Blaze, based on his profession, also identified mounted on top of the vehicle two high-powered license plate reader cameras. To the average passerby, it might appear to be a Google street view vehicle.

    After initially denying it, the Philly cops eventually admitted the van was their’s, but refused further comment.

    “We can confirm that this is not a Google Maps car, and that we are currently looking into the matter,” a Google spokesperson said. She would not elaborate as to whether the company was concerned that law enforcement was using a vehicle with warrantless surveillance technology while pretending to be a Google vehicle.


    It is impossible to escape this network of warrantless search and still live in society. Our cars, our phone, our credit cards and our very faces have been corrupted by a police state into tools of surveillance.




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    Copyright © 2020. All rights reserved. The views expressed here are solely those of the author(s) in their private capacity.

  • Recent Comments

    • John Poole said...

      1

      There was always something odd and somewhat menacing about a Mr. Softee truck slowly trolling my neighborhood with the music turned off. When I tried to approach it it is just sped up and disappeared. Mystery solved- Thanks PVB.

      05/18/16 8:37 AM | Comment Link

    • bloodypitchfork said...

      2

      quote”It is impossible to escape this network of warrantless search and still live in society. Our cars, our phone, our credit cards and our very faces have been corrupted by a police state into tools of surveillance.”unquote

      We have arrived. Orwell must be shaking his head. We’ve been sold out..lock stock and barrel. Meanwhile, the DFCOTP doesn’t have a clue, nor cares. Until a jackboot slams their face into the concrete. At least, for a while, there are STILL over 200 MILLION guns in the hands of the people. And the government knows it. This is why..the 2nd Amendment will be the next major obstacle for the government to overcome. And they will. Once that hurtle is overcome, they will come for the weapons themselves. They will start with the DATABASE of gunowners. This is why they have ALWAYS wanted a database. How else would they know who the gunowners are? This is how the Nazi’s began. Remove the power of the people to resist. PERIOD. And then..you have total Tyranny. Make no mistake. This is EXACTLY what is ahead.

      The only thing I regret is having to leave this stinking, insidious, police state to my progeny. They will spit on our graves. However, at least mine will know WHY they need a weapon.

      05/18/16 9:52 AM | Comment Link

    • wemeantwell said...

      3

      I’ll disagree. In brief:

      — many, many people LIKE what the govt is doing, believing it makes them “safer.” They buy the nothing to hide, nothing to fear argument.
      — the govt always has bigger guns, tanks, etc. Don’t bring a knife to a gunfight kind of thing.
      — mass surveillance allows govt to identify leaders, bust up organized things under “conspiracy to commit terrorism” laws.
      — the issue is not POWER to resist, it is WILL to resist. I think most of that is gone for the reasons above.

      05/18/16 10:51 AM | Comment Link

    • bloodypitchfork said...

      4

      05/18/16 9:54 AM | Comment Link

    • GARY SMITH said...

      5

      This Blog deserves a much better communitariat than it currently receives.

      Keep soldering on and it will get there.

      05/18/16 10:47 AM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...

      6

      The will to resist? For the inner city black folk make sure there are plenty of neighborhood liquor stores and corner convenience stores selling candy, chips and soda. For any possible restless young whites make it possible for them to legally become blissfully happy with their daily doobie.
      There might even be a new random sobriety test coming soon. If you can cup a reefer while still holding onto your pitchfork then off to jail for you!

      05/18/16 12:28 PM | Comment Link

    • Patricia said...

      7

      “Keep soldering on and it will get there.”
      I don’t know, Gar, it might take some welding and fusing as well.

      05/18/16 12:30 PM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...

      8

      Addendum: If you can smoke a reefer while still cradling your pitchfork you aren’t really inhaling or you need something stronger. Off to the clinic for you! Whatever it takes for us to keep you docile we’ll supply free it of charge! Your police state has your best interests at heart 24/7.

      05/18/16 2:26 PM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...

      9

      Patricia- anyreal suggestions instad of snarky metaphors

      05/18/16 5:02 PM | Comment Link

    • bloodypitchfork said...

      10

      Meanwhile, the state of what will occur here eventually is manifesting itself in other sovereign “states”. I keep telling you,…it’s only a matter of time before the FOOD element will lift it’s ugly head to bring anarchy to our shores. ..

      http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2016/05/18/venezuela-food-shortages-cause-some-hunt-dogs-cats-pigeons/84547888/

      05/18/16 6:52 PM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...

      11

      Pitch, if any elite of empire deserves to experience the swish of the guillotine it is those who run the American Empire. I wish it could be self engendered since I frown upon mob rule.

      05/18/16 7:22 PM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...

      12

      OK, Patricia. You’ve had long enough to join the discussion in a meaningful and productive manner. But first identify yourself. No one on this site hides as a churlish observor.
      Time to out yourself! We are waiting.

      05/18/16 7:25 PM | Comment Link

    • Patricia said...

      13

      Whoa! Sorry, “soldering” just struck me as funny. Won’t happen again.

      05/18/16 8:51 PM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...

      14

      Welcome aboard! A wide mix of reponders is appreciated.

      05/18/16 9:08 PM | Comment Link

    • The #PoliceState and License Plate Scanners http://wemeantwell.com/… | Dr. Roy Schestowitz (罗伊) said...

      15

      […] The #PoliceState and License Plate Scanners https://wemeantwell.com/blog/2016/05/18/the-police-state-and-license-plate-scanners/ […]

      05/19/16 1:23 AM | Comment Link

    • bloodypitchfork said...

      16

      GARY SMITH said…

      “This Blog deserves a much better communitariat than it currently receives. ”

      Lol. Your comment is living proof.

      05/19/16 6:37 AM | Comment Link

    • bloodypitchfork said...

      17

      wemeantwell said…

      “I’ll disagree. In brief:

      — many, many people LIKE what the govt is doing, believing it makes them “safer.” They buy the nothing to hide, nothing to fear argument.”

      They haven’t experienced Marshal Law and house to house warrantless searches… yet.

      “— the govt always has bigger guns, tanks, etc. Don’t bring a knife to a gunfight kind of thing.”

      Hahahahaha..that’s funny Peter. What happened in Vietnam eh? Or Afghanistan? Or Iraq? Hahahaha. And those countries didn’t have a population with 200 MILLION gun owners and a TRILLION rounds of ammo, and growing daily. Not to mention how many military will refuse to fire on their own people. OR desert.

      “— mass surveillance allows govt to identify leaders, bust up organized things under “conspiracy to commit terrorism” laws.”
      Hasn’t helped them stop anything yet. Except for those the FBI created.
      Besides. 4th Gen warfare doesn’t need leaders. And it targets communication

      “— the issue is not POWER to resist, it is WILL to resist. I think most of that is gone for the reasons above.”

      Give it time. You won’t see Totalitarianism in your lifetime anyway. But we’re getting close. Of course, Senator Church might be right. At some point, there will be no place to hide. And THAT is the scary part. With all the AI taking place. But one last thought. I said..food availability will decide what people will do. All it will take is one nationwide catastrophe…like a nuclear EMP.

      However, it’s all academic at this point anyway.

      05/19/16 7:19 AM | Comment Link

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