Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Are you docile enough to slip through the surveillance?

I did think of something interesting to share, but I forgot to bring my brain with me. Thankfully, Club Orlov has posted a fairly extenisve rant I think is worth sharing, so we'll go with that. He doesn't normally just free-form like this, and you can either read it for the content or just marvel at the flow and dance of the prose.

It is a bit darker than I had planned on being today, not wanting to follow-up the last post with anything dire. i'm pretty sure I had been going to talk about how nice pets are, or something equally docile (I'm also cautious about assuming that viewers are readers and readers are returners).
Instead I'm making sure I'm on any general watch-list that might be forming in some software somewhere, and now maybe you are too.

Enter Dimitri:
"People now tend to communicate via cell phone voice calls, text messages, emails, posts to Facebook and tweets, all of which are digital data, and all of which are saved. Relationships between people can be determined by looking at their Facebook profile, their email contacts, and their cell phone contacts. If your phone is GPS-enabled, your position can be tracked very precisely; if it isn't, your position can still be determined fairly accurately and tracked once your phone connects to a few different cell phone towers. All of this information can be continually monitored and analyzed without human intervention, raising red flags whenever some ominous pattern begins to emerge. We are not quite there yet, but at some point somebody might accidentally get blasted to bits by a drone strike while texting when a wrong T9 predictive text autocompletion triggers a particularly deadly keyword match."

"Thanks to vastly increased computational power, the emphasis is now shifting from enforcing the law to flagging as aberrant any sort of behavior that the system does not quite understand. That is, it is not looking for violations of specific laws, but for unusual patterns."

Thanks Dimitri.

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