We’re charging headlong into a future filled with one-way mirrors behind which the rich spy on the poor, and the strong on the weak.
Last week Wikileaks–remember them?–released a sheaf of documents about the Trapwire security system, which, depending on who you believe, is either a network of cameras being used to spy on everyone everywhere, or an ineffective bust more notable for shady business practicesthan any successful surveillance.
Is it being used for “monitoring every single person via facial recognition“? Probably not. Doesn’t matter. Let’s not kid ourselves: the point is that as cameras get cheaper and more connected and more ubiquitous, facial recognition gets more accurate, and data-mining software gets better, something like conspiracy theorists’ worst nightmarish fantasies of Trapwire will come to pass. I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: this is only a matter of time, and not all that much of it.
Oh, and in case the prospect of ubiquitous cameras with automatic facial recognition connected to enormous databases aren’t enough–if even the ‘floating eye’ military spy blimps now being used to patrol America’s borders, and the surveillance drones being adopted en masse by police forces everywhere, are not yet sufficient to trigger a certain baseline level of paranoia in you–just remember that governments everywhere are busy trying to hack into computers, too.
Consider Duqu, and Flame, and Gauss, and that mysterious payload. Consider FinFisher, described as “Governmental IT Intrusion and Remote Monitoring Solutions” by its distributors Gamma International; recently deconstructed by the University of Toronto’s Citizen Lab, its spoor has been discovered in at least 10 countries to date. Then consider what their successors will look like in five years’ time.
via TechCrunch – Jon Evans
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