Police will soon be able to track anywhere you drive in the US

A license plate reader company announces a national network for law enforcement to follow car It's already in more than 700 cities.

Curated via Twitter from CNET News’s twitter account….

In a blog post announcing the network, Flock Safety detailed how a police killing in Georgia had been solved because of license plate readers set up along the gunman’s escape route to Alabama.

Documents obtained by the American Civil Liberties Union in March 2019 showed that Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents used license plate readers to track people’s movements, accessing a database that logs 150 million to 200 million scans every month.

Flock Safety said it was able to track a suspect driving through Georgia and Alabama after he drive past 100 license plate readers, marked by the blue dots.

On Tuesday, Flock Safety, a license plate reader company, announced the "Total Analytics Law Officers Network," or TALON.

License plate readers are powerful technology that allow police to keep track of a car’s movement across a city.

An Electronic Frontier Foundation study in 2015 also found that Black and Latino residents were more likely to be scanned by license plate readers, bringing concerns about racial injustice with the surveillance technology.

License plate readers are a powerful surveillance tool, raising privacy concerns for people driving on public streets.

Police often rely on automatic license plate readers to track car movements in their jurisdiction.

But there are aspects of its guidelines that can’t be enforced, like cities only using their license plate readers after extensive public input or ensuring that officers aren’t abusing the technology.

A license plate reader company announces a national network for law enforcement to follow car movements.

In early August, Aurora police blamed a faulty license plate reader for misidentifying a vehicle as stolen, which led to officers holding a Black family, with children as young as 6, at gunpoint.

License plate readers are like facial recognition for cars: The cameras are trained to pick up the codes on the back of your vehicle, and log the time and location.

In 1998, a police lieutenant in Washington, DC, used license plate readers near a gay bar to blackmail the car owners.

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The network works when someone types in a license plate number and gets returns back on where cameras may have scanned the cars.

With TALON, Flock Safety wants to provide that capability across the entire country, meaning police in one state could track a car’s movements as it goes hundreds of miles away.

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