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Friday, May 04, 2018

Oakland Passes Powerful Bill To Combat Explosion Of Government Surveillance Tech

The Oakland Privacy Advisory Commission — a “citizen’s coalition that works regionally to defend the right to privacy and enhance public transparency and oversight” — would review the petition before the officials can move forward with implementation of devices like cellphone trackers (Stingrays) and license plate scanners. 
“Beaten on the calendar by Santa Clara County in June of 2016, and then Berkeley and Davis in April of 2018, Oakland rose up to defeat one of the largest Homeland Security projects ever foisted on an American city,” Oakland Privacy Advisory Commission wrote in a blog post, “and sparked a national conversation about whether the people get any say in how they are watched.” 
Police all across the country have steadily acquired and utilized such technology for alleged law enforcement purposes. Sometimes, those endeavors fall outside the bounds of what is legal or constitutional. Holding them accountable, however, is often difficult because it’s not always clear to the average person if and when law enforcement is using covert tactics and devices like Stingrays.
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