Millions in federal grant dollars have been handed out to police agencies nationwide for ALPR devices. The groundwork has been laid for weaving local ALPR into a growing, nationwide motor vehicle tracking system.
Theses tag scanning devices carry the potential to be used as mass surveillance devices in addition to their utility in catching car thieves or parking violators.
Failure to put statutory protections in place will result in a potentially useful and legitimate policing tool being used instead as a mass tracking system. This is not speculation or a matter of looking at the situation from a ‘worst case scenorio’ perspective. ALPR data from all over the country is being collected, shared and retained in federal and private databases
I see how this could be helpful in many ways, i.e. Amber alerts, warrants, missing persons, etc., however I believe the policies need to be in place before the system is activated. Policy regarding who has access to the information is paramount, as well as how long the info is stored. Will this be shared statewide, nationwide, internationally? Where will it end up?
Another rights violation that we just give away without a fight. Remember people, when the government takes liberties with your right to privacy, and you let them. They wont give it back