Aaron Swartz Day Tutorial: How To Cut And Paste Your Way To A Surveillance Policy Framework

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The Aaron Swartz Day Police Surveillance Project  aims to empower professional journalists and “citizen journalists,” so they can quickly and easily file a large set of public records requests to the Police and Sheriff Departments of a given city.

The set of public records requests templates is integrated with the Muckrock platform and you you can use them to get a comprehensive snapshot of how they are watching you in any city or county in California.

In about 90 minutes

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Here There And Everywhere

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Except in Berkeley, apparently. The once locus of progressivism with a young Our Revolution-endorsed mayor has to watch that mayor cave to police union pressure and continue tacit support of Alameda County’s Trump-loving sheriff and his Homeland Security-funded war games by a one vote margin. Yet another completely full Council hearing room for naught.

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Traveling License Plate Scans – Contra Costa Edition

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Bay Area cities with license plate reader equipment from Vigilant Solutions, an ICE vendor, share the scans of the license plates and car fronts of the people who drive in their town with a lot, emphasize a lot, of people. The LEARN database, Vigilant’s license plate scan storage system, contains the National Vehicle Locator Database (NVLS) which is a  law enforcement-collected license plate scan database. With NVLS, law enforcement agencies can share their scans with particular agencies and/or they can turn on a global “share button” which automatically shares all their scans with every other law enforcement agency in NVLS. At least until the spring of 2018, having the “share button” turned on meant that ICE could get to a city’s license plate reader scans via LEARN.

After news coverage in the spring of 2018 on Vigilant’s contract with ICE, and after several cities postponed or canceled Vigilant contracts over sanctuary concerns, the company announced that ICE would no longer receive access via a global NVLS share. We have not been able to verify the accuracy of that statement.

Enclosed are LEARN data sharing reports from the Office of the Sheriff in Contra Costa County, the City of Brentwood and the City of Martinez. All had the global data sharing turned on and all were sharing license plate data with at least 500 other agencies through the global sharing button. All the reports were posted on Document Cloud by EFF’s Streetwide Surveillance Project. 

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