U.S. cities increase surveillance, increasing privacy concernsOctober 19, 2013 3 Email article | Print article
Surveillance on citizens in the U.S. is not a thing done only by the NSA; apparently, cities within the country are gearing up with equipment to track people going about their daily lives. According to the New York Times, the federal government granted East Oakland $7 million to help fight against terror attacks, however; this money is being used to add monitoring tools throughout the city.
With the new system that is scheduled to kick off come summer of 2014, East Oakland will compile and process large amount of information on its citizens known as “big data.” In basic terms, this means the city police are capable of tracking everyone by several methods. Some may argue that is necessary for anti-terrorism purposes, but many more will insist this a huge violation of piracy.
For example, the transportation agency can track commuters via toll payments when drivers use an E-pass. Furthermore, the police can even monitor social media posts to track down criminals or criminal activities. Now, it is clear this kind of authority is capable of allowing the police officers to do some good, but just like the NSA and its creepy employees, someone will abuse the system.
Still, East Oakland isn’t the only city to track its citizens. The New York police department has 3,000 surveillance cameras with license plate readers and radiation sensors around the city. This was made possible with the support of the Federal government.
With the increase in criminal activities, we’re certain other cities will follow along with something similar in nature. In the long run, it will give the government more control over its citizens, and who knows where that will lead to.