In the UK, more than 200 CCTV cameras have been installed in bathrooms and changing rooms to monitor students. Nick Pickles, director of Big Brother Watch said that parents were not aware of this new development and that schools should explain what is being done with the footage recorded.
These cameras were installed in 207 schools in England, Scotland and Wales. While the reasoning for this development is explained as necessary to divert crime, there is no significant research proving that CCTV cameras lower crime rates.
Public surveillance in the US has turned toward drones for domestic policing. Local law enforcement is pushing for the authority to use drones under the guise of conducting search and rescue operations, mapping traffic accidents and otherwise general surveillance activities.
Government agencies and police departments are in line to receive licenses to use these aerial craft regardless of the infringement on American’s privacy. The suspicion that this is an excuse to get predator drones into American skies is being explained away. The fact that this would be a military operation and not a police endeavor is not being clarified.
Earlier this month, the Congressional Research Service released a report stating “the prospect of drone use inside the United States raises far-reaching issues concerning the extent of government surveillance authority, the value of privacy in the digital age, and the role of Congress in reconciling these issues.”
Meanwhile, the comments made on social media sites by users are being used against them in a court of law, according to a ruling back in August. District Judge William Pauley III decided that violent comments made on Facebook are not protected under privacy legislation because they were made in a known public forum.
The police are given “back doors” into social networking sites to spy on users for the sake of searching for terrorists or criminal activity. All the information shared on the internet is not protected under the Constitution, according to the US court system which allows governments to syphon this data from internet providers in an intuitive referred to as “deep packet inspection” technology.
Recently, Apple was granted a patent that enables corporations to wirelessly disable the camera function on specific iPhones in determining locations. The supposition is that this technology could be used to prevent protesters from recording events at political protests or public gatherings.
The US Patent No. 8254902 can give the “apparatus and methods of enforcement of policies upon a wireless device” can be turned off without customer participation. As a failsafe to keep this possibility from being taken advantage of, the mobile phone would have to be within a designated “sensitive area”; however police departments do not have to divulge where those areas are.
According to Twitter’s Transparency Report, the US government has made requests that are infringing on American privacy rights. Twitter states that “we’ve received more government requests in the first half of 2012, as outlined in this initial dataset, than in the entirety of 2011.”
Cloud computing is also under surveillance as every conversation is recorded and filed. While Microsoft denies this is true, the adherence to their rules and regulations explains that all your personal information is stored within Skype. In section 2 of their user contract explains: “Our primary purpose in collecting information is to provide you with a safe, smooth, efficient, and customized experience. Skype collects and uses, or has third party service providers acting on Skype’s behalf collecting and using, personal data relating to you, as permitted or necessary to . . .”
The Federal Bureau of Investigations just spent $1 billion to develop the Next Generation Identification System (NGIS) that uses biometric identification technology to create an intricate database accessible to federal and local law enforcement. NGIS is a nationwide collaboration of mugshots, iris scans, DNA records, voice samples, CCTV recordings, photo databases and other biometric data that combine to create intricate profiles on every American regardless of their criminal record.
The mainstream would have us believe that marketing strategies are the reason why they spy on their customers.
Sarah Downey, Abine privacy analyst explains how Facebook users should “pay more attention” to pop-up trackers and block them. Downey said: “In addition to invading your privacy, these tracking requests can consume large amounts of data. And transferring lots of data takes time. Generally, the more tracking requests on a website, the slower that website loads. That’s why DNT+ gets you surfing at 125% of the normal speed and with 90% of the bandwidth, compared to a browser without DNT+ running.”
The giant Big Brother control known as Trapwire, according to a June press release, states that this software is “designed to provide a simple yet powerful means of collecting and recording suspicious activity reports.” A system of interconnected nodes spot information considered to be suspect and then inputs it into the system to be “analyzed and compared with data entered from other areas within a network for the purpose of identifying patterns of behavior that are indicative of pre-attack planning.”
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