Arizona Politicians Realize The Unintended Consequences Of Tracking Technologies And Data Retention
from the not-all-good dept
One thing politicians often have trouble with is understanding the unintended consequences of various regulations they put in place. Unfortunately, all too often, they assume that there couldn't possibly be any unintended consequences and insist that their laws will do exactly what they're supposed to do. Unfortunately, that's rarely true. Many people have been worried that various laws to monitor people and retain data will have unintended consequences, but politicians for the most part seem to ignore that complaint. However, it seems like some Arizona politicians have discovered what unintended consequences look like. They were happy to hear that Arizona state police were making use of a new scanner system that would scan license plates to see if it spotted any stolen vehicles. The scanner would then store the information on the plates it scanned for 3 months. Then some people pointed out that the government was then retaining a pretty detailed database of where an awful lot of Arizona citizens might be at any point in time -- which seems like a pretty serious privacy violation. Luckily, rather than ignore the issue, the politicians are now proposing that the police ditch the data every 24 hours to avoid such problems. Of course, somehow it seems unlikely that the same politicians will realize that the exact same problems also apply to forcing ISPs to retain data on where their customers are surfing the internet.