15 January 2007

Big Brother's Eyes

It's called a number of things:

Automatic Plate Recognition, Automatic Vehicle Identification , Car Plate Recognition, Automatic Number Plate Recognition, Car Plate Reader, and Optical Character Reader

The video was sent to me by Stan and is from the Integrated Municipal Provincial Auto Crime Team (IMPACT) in British Columbia. There are numerous police agencies in the United States that have begun using and training on this technology.

Automatic number plate recognition is an optical character recognition technology that reads auto license plates at speeds up to 100 mph and about 60 reads per minute. It links into a system that networks numerous law enforcement agencies that cross-references the databases searching for offenses. In most interviews I have heard, the officers interviewed say it's only used to locate criminals with felony warrants.

Companies selling this technology advertise claim:
"The imaging function of the software identifies license plates and compares them to the database and can grant access for permitted vehicles, identify stolen vehicles or track vehicles to confirm their route."

You be the judge. Don't believe me. Look this stuff up.

In Texas, we are to be double taxed through the new toll road system. To apply that tax, the Texas Department of Transportation is utilizing this technology to auto-toll people as they drive. Take a look at one of the TXDOT documents here.
Here's another interesting site: http://www.licenseplaterecognition.com/

I encourage you to pursue finding out more about how it is being applied in your community.


Kirk the Dirk said...

No way. Not in the U.S. I'm sure it's all hype. They must be testing a beta or something. Your site is biased. You never say itbut I bet you are a tree-hugger.

Andy the Man said...

In a perfect world, this technology would only be used for the initial application - finding stolen vehicles, uninsured motorists, etc... blah blah blah. Since there have been countless examples of human nature throughout our lovely history, it doesn't take much of a leap to 1984. It's almost fortunate that England is a bit ahead of us in this arena, as we should be able to see the misapplication of this technology. Perhaps it's just a hope that we'll open our eyes before the panopticon is a reality, but I'd like to think we're strong enough to fight for our privacy. Ok, that was silly.

America Jones said...

Hey tree-hugger :)
you may also enjoy these links

security cameras sensitive to voice-stress levels:

scroll down to surveillance camera players:

Jamie Tanderheim said...

Makes me wan to watch your cartoons and music and not read the articles. So tired of what these people are doing. Both "sides".