by Michael Snyder
Big Brother is watching you...
Sadly, most people don't
realize how extensive the surveillance grid has now become. As you
drive to work or to school, license plate readers are systematically
tracking where you travel.
In major cities,
thousands of highly advanced security cameras (many equipped with
facial recognition technology) are monitoring your every move.
If authorities detect
that you are doing something suspicious, they can quickly pull up
your criminal, financial and medical records. Of course if they want
to dig deeper, your phone and your computer are constantly producing
a treasure trove of surveillance data. Nothing that you do on either
one of them is ever private.
In the past, compiling all of that information would take a great
deal of time.
But now tech giants such as,
...are selling "fusion systems" to governments all over
These "fusion systems"
can instantly integrate surveillance data from thousands of
different sources, and this has totally transformed how law
enforcement is conducted in many of our largest cities.
Michel is a senior fellow at the Carnegie Council for Ethics in
International Affairs, and he was given a tour of a "fusion
system" that is used by the city of Chicago
"INVESTIGATE," and Citigraf got to work on the reported assault.
The software runs on what Genetec calls a "correlation engine,"
a suite of algorithms that trawl through a city's historical
police records and live sensor feeds, looking for patterns and
a long list of possible leads appeared onscreen, including a
lineup of individuals previously arrested in the neighborhood
for violent crimes, the home addresses of parolees living
nearby, a catalog of similar recent 911 calls, photographs and
license plate numbers of vehicles that had been detected
speeding away from the scene, and video feeds from any cameras
that might have picked up evidence of the crime itself,
including those mounted on passing buses and trains.
enough information, in other words, for an officer to respond to
that original 911 call with a nearly telepathic sense of what
has just unfolded.
But these systems
are not just used to track down criminals.
In fact, they can
be used to investigate literally anyone.
occasion, Arthur Holland Michel got the opportunity to test
out the "fusion system" that Microsoft had built for
New York City...
official showed me how he could pull up any city resident's rap
sheet, lists of their known associates, cases in which they were
named as a victim of a crime or as a witness, and, if they had a
car, a heatmap of where they tended to drive and a full history
of their parking violations.
Then he handed
me the phone. Go ahead, he said; search a name.
A flurry of
people came to mind:
In the end, I
chose the victim of a shooting I'd witnessed in Brooklyn a
couple of years earlier.
He popped right
up, along with what felt like more personal information than I,
or even perhaps a curious officer, had any right to know without
a court order.
little dizzy, I gave the phone back.
If this is what is
going on in major cities such as Chicago and New York, can you
imagine the technology that the alphabet agencies of the federal
government must now possess?
Of course this
isn't just happening in the United States.
On the other side
of the Atlantic, a joint European surveillance project known
as ROXANNE is
causing a great deal of concern...
An acronym for Real
time netwOrk, teXt, and
speaker ANalytics for combating orgaNized
crimE, it was announced in
November the Republic's involvement in the project currently
being developed in Switzerland.
based platform ostensibly to monitor and crack down on organised
crime, an additional application of ROXANNE which its creators
advertise freely is the ability to monitor those guilty of
alleged hate speech and political extremism.
Strict new laws
against "hate speech" and "political extremism" are being instituted
all over Europe, and this new tool will help to track down "thought
In particular, this
new tool will be
media sites such as Facebook, YouTube as well as normal
A product of
the EU funded Horizon 2020 to foster new surveillance
ROXANNE works across social media sites such as
Facebook, YouTube as well as normal telecommunications platforms
to identify, categorise, and track faces and voices enabling
authorities to paint a more in depth picture of the network
being investigated, whether it be in relation to criminal
activity or those deemed politically extreme.
authorities to draw on raw data from a variety of sources and
platforms in order to recognise common speech patterns, facial
features, and geolocation, the end result is both to identify
suspects and paint an intricate picture of the networks being
put under the microscope.
So if you live in
Europe and you think that you might be guilty of "thought crime" at
some point, you might want to get rid of your phone and your
Things really have
gotten that bad over there, and it is just a matter of time before
the madness gets to the same level
in the United States, because we are going down the exact same
Here in the U.S.,
more political voices are being "deplatformed" with each passing
reporter Jordan Chariton originally cheered when conservatives were
being deplatformed, but at this point he regrets his calls for
censorship now that YouTube
has taken down one of his videos...
YouTube pulled video from his own channel featuring footage of
the January 6 riot for violating the platform's policies against
"spam and deceptive practices," the Chariton reversed his
"With time to
reflect, & seeing Silicon Valley's censorship onslaught, I
regret this tweet made in [the] heat of moment," the progressive
certain cable/YouTube outlets mislead audiences w/ dishonest
claims lacking real evidence, they shouldn't be targeted."
It is all fun and
games when it is happening to "the other side", but when it happens
to you suddenly it becomes real.
They really do want
to control what all of us do, say and think, and the Big Brother
surveillance grid is becoming more suffocating with each passing
If we do not put
limits on this technology while we still can, it is just a matter of
time before our society becomes a dystopian nightmare far more
horrible than anything than
George Orwell ever dared to imagine...