Everyone will be watched. The New York Daily News reports:
The Domain Awareness System designed by the NYPD and Microsoft Corp. uses data from a network of cameras, radiation detectors, license plate readers and crime reports, officials said.
“We’re not your mom and pop police department anymore,” Mayor Bloomberg crowed. “We are in the next century. We are leading the pack.”...
Using the new system, investigators will be able to access information through live video feeds and could potentially see who left a suspicious package behind just moments later, [Police commissioner Ray] Kelly said....
“We can track where a car associated with a murder suspect is currently located and where it’s been over the past several days, weeks or months,” Kelly said. “This is a system developed by police officers for police officers.”
The system will also check license plate numbers to a watch list and alert investigators if a match is detected and quickly pull up crime reports, arrests and warrants on a suspect.
The system has some civil liberties advocates warning of Big Brother type surveillance.
“We fully support the police using technology to combat crime and terrorism, but law-abiding New Yorkers should not end up in a police database every time they walk their dog, go to the doctor, or drive around Manhattan,” said New York Civil Liberties Union Associate Legal Director Chris Dunn.Technolog reports:
The Domain Awareness System taps into existing data, such as video surveillance feeds and 911 calls, and analyzes them in real time. Examples of its applications include immediate notification regarding suspicious packages and vehicles, tracking a car's location over a number of months, and improving deployment of emergency services.
The city has thousands of cameras, more than a hundred license plate readers, and has now deployed 2600 radiation detectors with officers on patrol. Anything from a 911 call to a suspiciously parked vehicle to a license plate on a watch list will alert people monitoring the system, and resources can be deployed immediately. Records and reports that mention a piece of data like a license or address will immediately be displayed as well...
It could reasonably be called an all-seeing surveillance system, but there are some limitations. It doesn't use facial recognition, for instance, though that is not a technical limitation — it could be implemented later on.
And Bloomberg is not stopping there, he is going to pimp for Microsoft and push other cities to buy the program:
The system, which cost somewhere between $30 and $40 million to develop, could also help pay for itself with the city expecting to earn 30% of the profits on Microsoft sales to other city’s and countries, Bloomberg said.
An EPJ reader emails:
A friend of mine worked on the project and tells me it's pretty scary. They really developed a system that can analyze all streams of information.