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High Tech Tools Used for Police Surveillance

November 13th, 2014 at 7:56 pm

hidden cameras, Illinois criminal defense attorney, legal rights, According to recent report, law enforcement officials in communities across the country, in small towns and big cities alike, are using increasingly sophisticated technology for police surveillance purposes. Some of that technology includes ultra high definition cameras, programs that are able to read license plates and recognize faces, as well as systems that can alert police to suspicious behavior. With such access into the lives of citizens, some are saying that such monitoring is a serious threat to privacy and strict guidelines need to be in place regarding how police use this technology.

The Need for Regulations

When invasive technology is used for police surveillance, private citizens often have a number of concerns. These range from rules regarding how the technology can legally be used to the disposal of the recorded footage that does not relate to criminal charges or the investigation of a crime. The main problem, and likely a substantial part of the reason such rules and guidelines have not been advanced, is that technology is developing at a faster pace than laws can keep pace with.

The reality is that few laws actually exist governing how police can use much of the technology already in place. A small percentage of states have laws regarding some of the technology, and the rest usually leave it up to police departments to create rules, but most fail to do so. Of those that do have such policies, they are often not thorough or effectively address many of the privacy concerns raised.

The fear is that although such technology is intended for legitimate use by police, it can also be subject to abuse either for personal tracking or random investigations that have no clear purpose. These secondary uses can pose a significant threat to protections afforded by the First Amendment. Still, some argue that the potential for abuse should not demean the use of the same technology for legitimate purposes.

In Chicago

Law enforcement officials in Chicago certainly use the latest technology in surveillance tools, and some say the networks they use are among the most sophisticated in the country. The technology used includes modern cameras that can view a subject from all angles at a high resolution, the collection and storage of large amount of information, and the analysis and identification of a specific activity. The databases used to store all of this information are virtually limitless. In fact, Chicago is known to have the country’s most extensive and connected network of cameras, at approximately 25,000.

Criminal Defense Attorney

If you have been charged with a crime in the Chicago area, the experienced Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorneys at the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley are prepared to advise you of your rights in light of the facts of your specific matter. Please feel free to contact us today to schedule a consultation. We have successful experience serving clients in Cook County and the surrounding area.

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