Homeland Security to Activate ‘National License Plate Recognition Database’ Essay

Submitted By jvc117
Words: 291
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Homeland Security to Activate ‘National License Plate Recognition Database’ “The Department of Homeland Security is set to activate a national license plate tracking system that will be shared with law enforcement, allowing DHS officers to take photos of any license plate using their smartphone and upload it to a database which will include a “hot list” of “target vehicles” (Watson). This system will track down license plate numbers that are seen through cameras or are voluntarily entered into the system from a variety of other sources (Watson). “In other countries that have activated license plate tracking networks, such as the United Kingdom, political activists have been targeted by having their vehicles added to a “hotlist” after attending protests. One example led to a man being questioned under anti-terror laws after he traveled to take part in an anti-war demonstration. As the image above illustrates, the cameras are also used by local governments in Australia to keep records of people who violate parking restrictions. Critics of the system in Australia have condemned it as “a Pandora’s box for abuse of power, mistakes and illegal disclosure,” stressing that the technology allows authorities to record “your number plate at a certain time and location,” allowing police to “compile an extraordinary amount of data about you. This includes your name, address, contact details, driving history and license status.” (Watson). So this basically allows Homeland Security…