China wants to make Minority Report A Reality

chinag-cyber

(Insert U.S. in the place of China while reading this article, and you wont be far off from how this technology/ Data gathering is being used here against the public as well)

China has a new strategy in fighting crime, ripped from science fiction and hastily pasted at the top of the list of paranoia-inducing concepts. It’s called pre-crime. It goes further than sting operations, counterterrorism, or any other government action to preempt criminal activity ever before.

Like the 2002 film Minority Report, China wants to fight crimes before they happen. They want to know they’ll happen before they’re planned—before the criminal even knows he’s going to be part of them. The Chinese Communist Party “has directed one of the country’s largest state-run defense contractors, China Electronics Technology Group, to develop software to collate data on jobs, hobbies, consumption habits, and other behavior of ordinary citizens to predict terrorist acts before they occur.”

The Chinese government wants to know about everything: every text a person sends, every extra stop they make on the way home. It’s designed for dissidents, but it means that they’ll know every time a smoker buys a pack of cigarettes, how much gas a car owner uses, what time the new mom goes to bed, and what’s in the bachelor’s refrigerator.

Science fiction aside, pre-crime is already somewhat of a reality; data gathering is part of intelligence communities’ and police surveillance efforts and has been for years. A lot of that surveillance has helped nab those responsible for things like child pornography. But whereas it’s been largely surgical here in the U.S., China wants total coverage, which makes crime prevention look a lot different.

Crime prevention is a double-edged sword when it comes to individual rights: The logic that promotes deterrents (like better locks, larger police forces) doesn’t target individual criminals, but rather focuses on protecting people and property from any criminals that might do harm. And again, this sort of thing isn’t going to be used to stop break-ins and muggings, but rather anti-government and anti-stability crimes. This activity isn’t getting a lot of pushback from civil liberties groups, and part of that could be because a lot of people aren’t convinced the government doesn’t already have all of this information.

Original Story: The Daily Beast

Public Data to be used by NSA for domestic policing

secret-surveillance

In the wake of recent public revelations about N.S.A. data collection and domestic spying, the New York Times reports that National Security Agency data will be shared with other intelligence agencies like the FBI without first applying any screens for privacy. What does this rule change mean for you? In short, domestic law enforcement officials now have access to huge amounts of public communications, obtained without warrants, that they can use to put people in jail.

Now Federal agents wont have to need a “national security” related reason to plug your name, email address, phone number, or other “selector” into the NSA’s gargantuan data trove. They can simply poke around in your private information in the course of totally routine investigations. If they find something that suggests, say, involvement in illegal drug activity, they can send that information to local or state police. That means information the NSA collects for purposes of so-called “national security” will be used by police to lock up ordinary Americans for routine crimes.

This basically formalizes what was already happening under the radar. We’ve known for a couple of years now that the D.E.A. and the IRS were getting information from the NSA. Because that information was obtained without a warrant, the agencies were instructed to engage in “parallel construction” when explaining to courts and defense attorneys how the information had been obtained

Until now, N.S.A. analysts have filtered the surveillance information for the rest of the government. They search and evaluate the information and pass only the portions of phone calls or email that they decide is pertinent on to colleagues at the Central Intelligence Agency, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and other agencies. And before doing so, the N.S.A. takes steps to mask the names and any irrelevant information about innocent Americans.
The new system would permit analysts at other intelligence agencies to obtain direct access to raw information from the N.S.A.’s surveillance to evaluate for themselves.

It’s all another sobering reminder that any powers we grant to the federal government for the purpose of national security will inevitably be used just about everywhere else. And extraordinary powers we grant government in wartime rarely go away once the war is over.

Sources: Washington Post, New York Times

Government Genome Project to Sequence DNA of All US Babies at Birth

Genomeproject

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has invested $25 million into a project to identify the DNA structure of American infants entitled the 2013 Genomic Sequencing and Newborn Screening Disorders (GSNSD) research program.

The initial concerns of the GSNSD are the ethical, legal and social implications of using infant genetic information for scientific study.This endeavor is being facilitated with academic institutions in cities:
• Boston
• San Francisco
• Chapel Hill
• Kansas City

The decoding of infant DNA, called genome sequencing, will create a map of each individual child’s genetic make-up to identify health risks that could develop in childhood or later in life.

Currently, an estimated 4 million US infants born annually have their heel pricked for a blood sample that is tested for 30 rare diseases as part of a national health initiative. the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is endeavoring to collect the DNA of all children to be stored in case of a future arrest or circumstance wherein the use of their DNA would be pertinent or necessary for involvement in criminal activity and conviction.
DHS estimates that 1 million people are subject to this intrusive collection because of incarceration and non-criminal reasons. Children who are caught in the criminal system have their DNA stored along with adult offenders.

Jennifer Lynch of the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) asserts: “Collecting DNA from anyone detained by the government for any number of non-criminal reasons – especially juveniles – seems to be yet another step on the slippery slope of collecting DNA from everyone in the United States, no matter their status.”

Via Red Ice Creations

Original Article Here

DARPA To Develop Technology To Analyze Social Media

A contract proposal from the Defense Department’s research arm DARPA revealed the Pentagon is looking to develop computer algorithms which would mine data from social media websites and use it to track and analyze the behavior of various criminal and terrorist groups (h/t Mashable). In order to understand group dynamics and “forecast trends”, the DOD hopes to understand how a group evolves, interacts, recruits, influences other groups and affect the opinions of individuals and communities.

In phase 1, DARPA wants a system developed which would first track groups and their state changes and research “key indicators” of interactions. In phase 2, the system developed would learn the “dynamics of group behavior and inter- and intra-group interactions in an unsupervised manner,” Phase 3, prototype development, would:“be of great interest to industrial espionage prevention specialists, law enforcement, market analysts, and polling organizations. This capability would be applicable to a broad range of tactical as well as strategic military operations.”

While only in the proposal phase, such desires from the military should send chills down the spine of anyone interested in protecting civil liberties. The DOD might purport to be interested in using such technology for the purposes of understanding “terrorist” or “criminal” groups, we’ve already seen the increased criminalization of dissent. Many American law enforcement agencies have had their eyes and ears on activist groups that use Twitter, Facebook and other social media outlets, cell phone carriers and other forms of electronic communication as a way of spreading ideas and organizing protests

Original Story Here

Minority Report Software becomes a reality.

Minority Report finally becomes a reality: new hi-tech video wall will let law enforcement agencies sift through data with a wave of their hand.
The hi-tech computer system behind the film ‘Minority Report’ – where Tom Cruise speeds through video on a large screen using only hand gestures – is making its way into the real world.
American computer experts have revealed the software has become a reality – and they hope to sell it to law enforcement agencies around the world

However, its inventors stress is not the ‘pre-crime’ detection program illustrated in the 2002 Steven Spielberg sci-fi film. *(at leat not functionally or officialy Yet...)*
What makes the real-life version of the software different from the one seen on film is that Oblong does not supply the analytics of the futuristic “pre-crime” division.

That does not prevent a company or law enforcement agency from using the software and adding its own analytics. “We think law enforcement and intelligence are big data users and we think our technology is the leader,” Kramer said.

And of course the Military/Intelligence agencies/Law enforcement will be the ones to first capitalize on this technology and use it to their advantage. Sure there will be a civilian component that can use this for business means, but it will be limited to that. Another technology used against instead of for the benefit of humanity. What a shock!!!

Oh and Pre-crime is already here