Boston Police Bought Spy Tech With A Pot Of Cash Hidden From The Public Slashdot

Councilor Arroyo is a co-sponsor of a brand new metropolis ordinance barring BPD from acquiring new surveillance technology without first receiving approval from the town council. He stated the communities being surveilled need to be a half of the discussion around the equipment and expertise affecting them. In unclassified paperwork obtained by, the FBI in 2013 prohibits Boston police from communicating to the public, especially members of the media, about cell web site simulator know-how. Image courtesy of Robin Lubbock/WBUR.At the time, the FBI deemed cell website simulators so specialized thatit prohibited Boston policeand different legislation enforcement from speaking concerning the devices publicly, specifically with the media. Boston obtained stingray coaching and equipment way back to 2009, based on a Harris bill acquired An Augustinvestigationby WBUR and ProPublica found that even if no felony costs are introduced, regulation enforcement virtually always hold the money and have few limitations on how they spend it.

It will all the time lead to the police gathering personal data on hundreds of folks that have nothing to do with the case at hand. I’m fairly sure you meant the latter, however without near-blanket safety from lawsuits from “doing their job,” police chiefs will demand much greater salaries to enable them to pay for liability insurance coverage. If the reply to both is “sure” then you could be on to something. Civil asset forfeiture is the police punishing people, with out due process.

Across the nation, some law enforcement agencies have deployed controversial surveillance know-how to trace cellphone location and use. Critics say it threatens constitutional rights and members of Congress have moved to restrain its use. Nonetheless, in 2019 the Boston Police Department bought the system known as a cell web site simulator — and tapped a hidden pot of money that saved the purchase out of the general public eye. A WBUR investigation with ProPublica found elected officials and the public had been largely kept in the lifeless of night when Boston police spent $627,000 on this gear by dipping into cash seized in connection …

The details of how this technology is bought and operated by Boston police fall mostly outdoors of the public’s view, however the City Council is attempting to vary that. That similar yr, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled that real-time surveillance of a person’s cellphone constitutes a search under misterap the state’s Constitution and therefore requires a warrant, besides in “exigent” circumstances. Kade Crockford, who heads the Technology for Liberty program on the ACLU of Massachusetts, referred to as the cell site simulator “extremely invasive” and was not stunned Boston police used forfeiture dollars to pay for it, which averted scrutiny.

Right now legislation enforcement businesses like the Boston Police Department could also be using these units to surveil legal exercise, but what’s to cease an overzealous local, state, or federal entity from spying on everyday citizens? After all, we’ve seen the Obama administration target conservatives utilizing the IRS and the Biden administration mull over utilizing social media to stamp out dissent from leftist thought. A Push to Regulate the Spy TechnologyThe proliferation of this technology amongst local regulation enforcement departments throughout the country concerns civil rights advocates.

Shedding Light on How Money Is SpentThe details of how this know-how is purchased and operated by Boston police fall principally exterior of the public’s view, but the City Council is trying to vary that. That similar yr, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled thatreal-time surveillance of a person’s cellphone constitutes a search underneath the state’s Constitution and due to this fact requires a warrant, except in “exigent” circumstances. Federal courts in Oakland, California, and New York City, as well as a Maryland state appellate court docket, alsoruledthat police use of spy expertise is a violation of the Fourth Amendment proper to not be unreasonably searched and not utilizing a court-ordered warrant.

The favored options for “equity points” often contain jobs for left activists or NGOs – “defund the police” transmutes into “we need half a department worth of assorted flavors of social employees”. The “right” does not should build it is own infrastructure, plenty of right wing media personalities and publications maintain a presence on Facebook/Twitter/etc… The identical polarizing media conveniently blamed Facebook and Twitter for all the polarization that they’ve been fomenting for years. I guess that move wasn’t as shocking for me as seeing the number of folks in SV who bought into that narrative.

But the acquisition would not show up beneath the Boston Police Department. As of 2016, California was the one recognized state that requires city councils to approve written police procedures to be used of stingrays earlier than buying. In this case, they purchased a “stingray” that they then used to surveil targets’ places, data, and contacts…

In unclassified documents obtained by, the FBI in 2013 prohibited Boston police from speaking to the general public about cell site simulator expertise. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)At the time, the FBI deemed cell site simulators so specialized that it prohibited Boston police and other law enforcement from speaking about the devices publicly, specifically with the media. Boston obtained stingray training and equipment as far again as 2009, according to a Harris invoice acquired by Boston metropolis councilors are calling for a evaluate of the town Police Department’s purchase of controversial surveillance expertise, after an investigation by WBUR and ProPublica revealed the transaction, which had been hidden from public view. Regardless of where you stand on using civil asset forfeiture, it ought to bother you that police departments might be spying on you with no warrant and purchasing the equipment that they use to take action exterior of their regular budgets.

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