Discussion in 'privacy general' started by Pinga, Jul 23, 2013.
This is what I suspect all the NSA and other state spying is really intended for. I imagine the goal to be biometric state owned profiles on all citizens that, with the help of predictive algorithms, produce 'threat reports' on each of us that can be relayed in the field in real time. Something like a cross between credit scores and secret a facebook, where even 'pre-emptive' action can be taken to 'prevent crime'. Technology like this is useful when used in a very limited and clearly defined way, but with function creep being the way it is I think it is almost inevitable that it will be used to further erode civil liberties. How long before you are apprehended without probable cause/reasonable suspicion based on a computer algorithm?
I remember reading a while ago about predictive policing in the US, and I clearly remember that the software they were trying used input from the police officers themselves about places and time intervals where crimes were more likely to happen. So this kind of "predictions" were based mostly on police officers insight, and to be honest I don't find anything wrong with it.
However, when people talk about predictive police (and this article is no different), they are thinking about social media profiling or "detect nervous behaviour such as fidgeting, shallow breathing and signs of a swift heartbeat" in an airport. IMO, this is very wrong, because it is based on nothing. For instance, anyone who is afraid of flying can be nervous in an airport, or can get drunk or have a bad day and post stupid stuff on Facebook. Basing a profile on this sort of information leads to a big number of false positives, making the method useless.
Police in many towns in Mass. now use iPhone attachments to face, iris, and fingerprint scan on routine stops:
Each year NYPD stops and searches hundreds of thousands on the street and in private buildings each year, based on "furtive movements."
Combine this with Predictive Policing and cell phone search and whatta ya got?
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