Jan 312017
 January 31, 2017  Posted by  Healthcare, Surveillance, U.S.

Theo Douglas reports:

Missouri, still the only state without its own Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP), could enact a statewide version in 2017 after roughly 12 years of trying. For now, however, the operative word continues to be “could.”

As it has been in years past, a key issue is one familiar to virtually anyone with a computer, a cellphone, or the ability to stream movies or play multiplayer video games — privacy.

Two statehouse officials continue to have differing views of what constitutes privacy in a PDMP in a virtual world.

Read more on Government Technology.

Jan 302017
 January 30, 2017  Posted by  Surveillance, U.S.

Joe Cadillic sends along this story. Note that the dateline is January 27, before the executive order on immigration was announced.

Police agencies in Harford County say they don’t stop people just to check their immigration status, but the recent experience of a Bel Air woman raises questions about how clearly that’s understood by officers on his streets, the town’s police chief admits.

Bel Air Police Department Chief Charles Moore, who’s led the agency since September 2015, said he’s not sure if his department has a policy specifically dealing with questioning a person’s immigration status, but added: “If there isn’t one, there will be.”

Read more about the stop and the department’s response on The Baltimore Sun.

And since I’ve mentioned Trump’s Executive Order on immigration, here’s a report from this morning on Republicans who oppose, support Trump refugee order. If anyone sees a current list for Democrats, please send me a link.


Jan 282017
 January 28, 2017  Posted by  Court, Healthcare, Surveillance

So since I was just talking about biological data (DNA) being obtained as evidence, it seems fitting to also point to a somewhat concerning case in Ohio. Karin Johnson reports:

A Middletown man was indicted on charges of arson and insurance fraud.

Police said data they were able to retrieve from his electronic heart monitor was one of the key pieces of evidence that led to them charging Ross Compton.

A fire last September destroyed Compton’s house on Court Donegal in Middletown.

In his 911 call, he told a dispatcher, “I grabbed a bunch of stuff, threw it out the window.”

Compton also told the dispatcher that he had an artificial heart.

Middletown police said Compton told them that he was able to pack his suitcases and
throw them out his bedroom window after he broke out the glass with a walking stick.

According to court documents obtained by WLWT, a cardiologist told police that those actions were “highly improbable” because of Compton’s medical condition.

Police sought to prove that by collecting electronic data stored in Compton’s electronic heart device. They wanted to know Compton’s heart rate, pacer demand and cardiac rhythms before, during and after the fire.

Read more on WLWT.

So where are we going if devices that people wear for their health conditions can be used as evidence against them to obtain warrants, or to convict them? Does evidence based on the devices meet the Daubert standard? Are there any Fifth Amendment issues here? Is this really any different than using a blood draw for alcohol level in a suspected drunk-driving case that resulted in injuries?

h/t, Joe Cadillic

Jan 282017
 January 28, 2017  Posted by  Online, Youth & Schools

Daniel Susser is an assistant professor of philosophy at San Jose State University. He works in philosophy of technology, with a focus on its normative (social/political/ethical) dimensions. And he bravely tried to tackle the question of whether parents should post pictures of their children online, or if it violates their privacy.

You can view his commentary on Penn State News. Maybe some of the points he raises will help you make decisions for yourself.

I suspect Joe Cadillic will find the comments unsatisfactory because Susser doesn’t seem to address the risks of surveillance – can photos of your child run through facial recognition be used to identify them later in life, even if you don’t put your child’s name on the picture? Can pictures of their fingers be used to capture fingerprints that could be used against them as adults? There is so much surveillance capacity expanding exponentially that the privacy issues of today may actually result in criminal prosecution issues when the child is older.

Just something else to think about.