While I laid out in my last post why I do not believe there is much legitimate evidence to suggest that we are approaching an en masse shift from PCs to tethered appliances, Zittrain’s analysis of the heretofore abuses of tethered appliances is worthy of attention.
When control over a technology resides in the engineer or corporation, Zittrain shows that this control can be abused by the state or corporation by taking remote control of the device, altering its functionality, or listening in on unsuspecting people.
Connected technologies like cell phones, OnStar, satellite TVs or Digital Video Recorders, or any internet or satellite connected system are especially vulnerable to remote control by the corporate controller.
Zittrain shows that in the U.S. the police have obtained secret warrants to spy on people without their knowledge via cell phones and car GPS systems like OnStar.
Connected technologies can be turned on remotely without you being aware and used as a microphone and GPS tracker to listen in and follow you.
Perhaps in the future, higher quality video cameras on cell phones will be exploited in the same manner – allowing privacy invaders to further exploit facial recognition software to track down and identify those they seek.
What this leads to is a reduction in the balance between public generated resistance of corporate and state surveillance. To resist unfair and invasive surveillance we must be aware of it. That cell phones and other connected technologies can be used as a surveillance device is not well known in the public mind.
By making surveillance secret the state is infringing on the public’s right to know when and how they are being watched, followed, or listened to.
~ Surveillance Links ~
Cell Phone Video Surveillance Monitoring. http://www.security-int.com/categories/video-surveillance/cell-phone-video-surveillance.asp
Halcon Surveillance software – facial recognition. http://www.halcon.de/halcon/applications/application.pl?name=surveillance
Only 13 States have Laws against cameras in dressing rooms. http://delsonic.wordpress.com/2008/03/15/americans-caught-on-surveillance-video-200-times-per-day-only-13-states-have-laws-against-cameras-in-dressing-rooms-and-bathrooms-look-feature-film-to-open-nationally-on-march-21/