Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

Motorola, known for cellphones, is fast becoming a major player in government surveillance

Posted by M. C. on October 2, 2019

No surprise, Motorola has the tech.

Things are getting worse for Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.

By Jon Schuppe

Motorola Solutions is among the tech firms racing to deliver new ways of monitoring the public.

The surveillance tools have been installed in schools and public housing, deployed on roads and public transit, and worn by police officers.

They’ve been developed by an array of technology firms competing for government business.

And many are now owned by a company seeking to grab a bigger piece of a booming market.

Motorola, a brand typically associated with cellphones and police radios, has joined the race among tech firms to deliver new ways of monitoring the public.

Since 2017, the Chicago-based tech company — now known as Motorola Solutions, after Motorola Inc. spun off its mobile phone business — has invested $1.7 billion to support or acquire companies that build police body cameras; train cameras to spot certain faces or behavior; sift through video for suspicious people; and track the movement of cars by their license plates. By consolidating these tools within a single corporation, and potentially combining them into a single product, Motorola Solutions is boosting its stature in the surveillance industry ─ and amplifying concerns about the government’s growing power to watch people almost anywhere they go.

“Your privacy is more protected when information about you is scattered among agencies and entities. When all that is unified under one roof, that sharpens the privacy issues,” said Jay Stanley, a senior policy analyst for the American Civil Liberties Union, where he researches technology’s impact on privacy. “I don’t know exactly what kind of synergies a company like Motorola Solutions might get from assembling all these pieces, but in general it’s a scary prospect.”…

Motorola Solutions’ move into high-tech surveillance hasn’t attracted much scrutiny from privacy researchers. But that is changing as the company continues to assemble powerful surveillance tools.

They include:

Police body cameras that learn what people look like:

Surveillance cameras that can track people’s movements:

Automated license plate readers

Be seeing you

Motorola MBP18 1.8" LCD Video Baby Monitor - Night Vision ...




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