Monday, January 29, 2007

The Sun Online - News: You are undie surveillance

The Sun Online - News: You are undie surveillance:

"OFFICIALS are bracing themselves for a storm of public outrage over their controversial X-ray cameras scheme.

As part of the most shocking extension of Big Brother powers ever planned here, lenses in lampposts would snap “naked” pictures of passers-by to trap terror suspects.

The proposal is contained in leaked documents drawn up by the Home Office and presented to PM Tony Blair’s working group on Security, Crime and Justice.

But the prospect of the State snooping on individuals’ most private parts is certain to spark national fury.

And officials are battling to find a way of dealing with that reaction.

A January 17 memo seen by The Sun discusses the cameras, which can see through clothes.

It says “detection of weapons and explosives will become easier” and says cameras could be deployed in street furniture.

[...]

The memo says: “The social acceptability of routine intrusive detection measures and the operational response required in the event of an alarm are likely to be limiting factors.

“Privacy is an issue because the machines see through clothing.”

Beside cameras, officials are also considering systems known as millimetre wave imaging and THz imaging and spectroscopy.

All are routinely used in airports and other secure places to detect explosives and weapons in luggage and on people.


Rumbled ... US system 'strip-searches' smugglers


Air passengers are now chosen at random for full X-ray examinations — and must agree to it.

Technology could also be used to halt theft, with fingerprint scanners fitted to many items.

Elsewhere, tagged offenders could be sent electronic pulses to remind them not to re-offend.

Cops would also get the power to build a database of everyone in the land. Three-dimensional CCTV pictures would be coupled with records of people’s mobile phones and even their travel cards to get details of their movements and habits.

Facial recognition systems to help track individuals’ movements are also being considered."

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