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Angels to watch over us? Hexacopter Dawn!

By 22 September 2011 24

The Liberals’ Alistair Coe has is alarmed by the fruit of his FOI cultivation into point to point cameras.

Information obtained by ACT Shadow Transport Services Minister, Alistair Coe, shows the governments point-to-point speed cameras can be used for car tracking by unmanned aerial vehicles or ‘drones’.

“This shocking revelation from an Australian Federal Police Representative on the Point-to-Point Camera Steering Committee shows the cameras could be used for drones to follow ‘vehicles of interest’ until police interception could be performed,” Mr Coe said.

    ‘….a specific benefit would derive if the P2P cameras were linked to UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles)
    which could track vehicles of interest until police interception could be safely performed.’(AFP
    Representative, Point-to-Point Camera Steering Committee, 18 June 2010).

“The representative also said the cameras could be used to detect other vehicles of interest:

    ‘…The use of the P2P cameras to detect unregistered, stolen and other vehicles of interest would
    provide ongoing and longer term benefits of the project.’(AFP Representative, Point-to-Point Camera
    Steering Committee, 18 June 2010).

“This confirms my concerns about the capacity for point-to-point cameras to be used for mass surveillance, with every single car that passes being tracked in a centralised database.

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24 Responses to Angels to watch over us? Hexacopter Dawn!
#1
zippyzippy3:11 pm, 22 Sep 11

Liberal want to curb police powers and community surveillance eh? Good on them.

I hear Alistair is now going to start a campaign against CCTV.

#2
Skidbladnir3:40 pm, 22 Sep 11

I don’t know why he’s acting like this is some kind of grand revelation of *shifty eyes* Conspiracy, usage as a mass surveillance tool was part of the original Point-to-Point Design Study.

Also, the CPO was openly discussing this in July.

#3
Erg04:01 pm, 22 Sep 11

Yes, but now he’s got confirmation that the cameras which capture and store number plates could be used to capture and store number plates in a database.

#4
mtrax6:09 pm, 22 Sep 11

so what happens to this data anyway even if its not used for pursuits?
is it deleted automatically ?

#5
Gerry-Built6:23 pm, 22 Sep 11

Can someone explain why mass surveillance is a problem, anyhow? especially to those of us who do our best to follow the law?

#6
Henry826:52 pm, 22 Sep 11

Gerry-Built said :

Can someone explain why mass surveillance is a problem, anyhow?

you should have a reasonable expectation of privacy.

#7
Skidbladnir6:58 pm, 22 Sep 11

Gerry-Built said :

Can someone explain why mass surveillance is a problem, anyhow? especially to those of us who do our best to follow the law?

Assumption 1:
The party seeking or maintaining the information about you has pure motives, intentions, and is totally beyond corruption, now and always.

Assumption 2:
You do not now, nor will you ever do, anything that could ever be construed as suspicious or controversial by anyone who may have access to this information, either directly our through corruptible methods.

Alternately, we all have things we can and should wish to hide. They aren’t criminal or even controversial. These are simply personal and shouldn’t have to be revealed to anyone who you don’t wish to be in-the-know.

This government and the Chief Police Officer disagrees, but believe you should party for such a system. For “safety”.

#8
cranky8:32 pm, 22 Sep 11

A further comment made in the CT article, & not noted above, was;

‘Another meeting attendee said revenue projections showed that the cost of installing the system should be paid back within six to 12 months.’
‘He noted that P2P systems had relatively low infringement rates, and there may be scope to reduce the tolerance level to increase infringement numbers’.

So we have confirmed that pub servs are spending their time dreaming up the most revenue generating methods that can be applied. Not a mention of any road safety benefits!!

I’m fairly sure I didn’t miss any anouncement by local Labor that they would be introducing this scheme prior to the last election. Can they honestly claim a mandate for this scheme? Are we such sheep that we go along with every vehicle on a particular road being recorded because we ‘may’ break some (deliberately low) speed limit? Are we all such bogans that we may have committed a crime, stolen a car, driving unregistered/uninsured, escaping Police, or simply having it away with the monitoring officer’s missus?

I don’t believe Govco has our permission to enact these draconian surveillance methods.

#9
Skidbladnir8:54 pm, 22 Sep 11

RE: Cost Projections.
Read the design studies.
Note the cost increases under different stakeholder expectation and flexibility retirements are modelled.
Some are more feasible and politically acceptable than others.

PS: Skidbladnir did not write or have input on the Design Study. He has read it and some other choice related documents cover-to-cover, however…

#10
Lookout Smithers9:13 pm, 22 Sep 11

Gerry-Built said :

Can someone explain why mass surveillance is a problem, anyhow? especially to those of us who do our best to follow the law?

It isn’t a problem. It happens to us all the time, albeit illegal. It is an old tactic which won’t help the average law enforcer. Following the law has nothing to do with it, you don’t have to be a law breaker to be done over by it. Ask any of the exonerated.

#11
cranky9:14 pm, 22 Sep 11

Hey Skid,

Has ANY thought been given to road safety?

#12
Aeek9:48 pm, 22 Sep 11

One of my reasons for driving over Hindmarsh Hill can be done by bicycle, needs to be a fixie which makes it tough, braked because that’s road legal.I could consider this motivation.

#13
RedDogInCan10:15 pm, 22 Sep 11

Gerry-Built said :

Can someone explain why mass surveillance is a problem, anyhow? especially to those of us who do our best to follow the law?

Because doing your best won’t be good enough. Automated camera systems don’t have the discretion to let unintended and inconsequential breaches of the law slide. You now face being fined for a moments inattention rather than an intentional act. You risk being considered a criminal just because you are human.

#14
yellowsnow10:55 pm, 22 Sep 11

Henry82 said :

Gerry-Built said :

Can someone explain why mass surveillance is a problem, anyhow?

you should have a reasonable expectation of privacy.

a little bit of surveillance here and there is not a problem, but when things get to the point that everyone’s movements can be tracked accurately and kept for posterity in databases, that’s pretty scary. Especially if private companies or less scrupulous people get access to the data (incl through hacking) for whatever reason. Also, we may have relatively benign (if incompetent) governments now, but who’s to say what kind of govts will be in power in 20 years time and how they might use or abuse the surveillance data. Imagine if a future government, following the war on drugs and war on terror, instituted a war on speeding, or a war on emitting carbon dioxide, and retrospectively pursued all transgressors through the databases, meting out horrible punishments (for instance suspects could be shipped to Malaysia or Nauru and tortured there on Australia’s behalf). It could happen!

But on the other hand surveillance is admittedly v handy in combating crime. I guess the question at the end of the day is how much privacy and freedom we want to give up in exchange for protection from crime / punishment of criminals / increased govt revenue from traffic offences

#15
Postalgeek7:31 am, 23 Sep 11

Outrageous. First police want to indulge in futile and dangerous high speed pursuits, and when the public gets all bolshie about it they try to pull a swifty and track the vehicles electronically, invading everyone’s right to privacy on a public road and remain unharassed by law enforcement. As a car thief I’d be ropeable.

#16
stormboy8:35 am, 23 Sep 11

I wanna fly the drones!

#17
what_the9:01 am, 23 Sep 11

cranky said :

Hey Skid,

Has ANY thought been given to road safety?

Sure it has, at a per $ return…

#18
Tooks10:02 am, 23 Sep 11

I’ll preface this by saying I hate P2P cameras, but…..

We are all under mass surveillance much of the time anyway. If they want to keep data about my car, I really couldn’t care less. I understand the argument “but if they start doing this, where will it end”, but seriously…people are worried about this P2P stuff?

I can’t believe some of the paranoia on this thread. If you’re worried about this, then I’d suggest you should be more worried about some of the people who may have access to your personal information. Bankers, ATO, RTA, Telstra, ACTEW, Electoral Commission, Credit card companies, clubs, websites etc. If you think members of criminal gangs haven’t infiltrated such areas already, you’re dreaming. Then there’s anyone in such an area who may have a personal grudge against you…

I’ll stick to worrying about things worth worrying about.

#19
Palifox10:08 am, 23 Sep 11

Skidbladnir has nailed it at #7

#20
addicus12:12 pm, 23 Sep 11

We are directed in a way of ”mass everything” which is easier to control and monitor. Make country living less affordable to get everyone into a city for revenue. Consolidation of information and personal data is also the aim. ‘Smartcards’ sound familiar, in way of having all your information there available. Next thing, it’s integrated with the financial system, your card now is you method of payment, identification and yes, tracking. Credit cards are a lame method at the moment, you don’t think a better method is being established now and even being implemented in the US? Well it is. ”Ok people, you hate carrying cards around……and hey if you loose it you might be locked up or mistaken for someone else, maybe a terrorist……so please insert this into your arm, it’s for your own safety, we may need to find you in another 911 attack”
Then saying under their voice ”But …Do as we say or it will cease to work, thus you have nothing and you become no one”. The new ”wave” credit card payment method is start of this technology, your card has a chip in it. All sounds very conspecicy theory like, but where else are we headed on the track we currently follow? People were sold the sense of ‘freedom’ during the industrialised revolution, look how that’s panned out for human kind, over consumerism, inappropriate privatisation and the greed for money over moral values. A sense of ‘freedom” it was sold as, but from this system actually now has created these negative affects we aren’t happy with. Now it is the sense of ‘security’ we need, at a massive cost to the future of our children and their children regarding being consumed with not falling out of line and becoming a criminal of the system, which was initially sold to us by saying this is put in place to protect us from that very thing. Wolf’s dressed as sheep.

#21
Gungahlin Al12:23 pm, 23 Sep 11

Without commenting on the topic itself, I can’t help but find this complaint ironic given that Liberals are traditional pushing for more policing in every respect. Not when it is someone else’s idea?

#22
johnboy12:30 pm, 23 Sep 11

Gungahlin Al said :

Without commenting on the topic itself, I can’t help but find this complaint ironic given that Liberals are traditional pushing for more policing in every respect. Not when it is someone else’s idea?

More policing of other people Al. This is policing of their own sort of people. Less keen then it seems.

#23
Gungahlin Al7:07 am, 25 Sep 11
#24
poetix10:59 am, 25 Sep 11

Gungahlin Al said :

This story has made it onto overseas media: http://io9.com/5843465/australian-police-want-aerial-surveillance-drones-to-track-license-plates-and-monitor-cars-of-interest

Thanks for this link. It’s a great web-site.

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