Return to Video

#rC3 - Spot the Surveillance

  • 0:05 - 0:17
    rC3 preroll music
  • 0:17 - 0:24
    Herald: Yeah, and the next talk I'm very
    proud to announce, we have a speaker who's
  • 0:25 - 0:31
    coming in from sunny California and he's
    an attorney, he's working for Harvard.
  • 0:31 - 0:37
    He's doing so many things and he's
    fighting for our digital rights. Very
  • 0:37 - 0:42
    happy to say hi. Welcome.
    Kurt Opsahl: Thank you!
  • 0:47 - 0:58
    Herald: And "Spot the Surveillance" is the
    topic. We'll see what we haven't seen
  • 0:58 - 1:05
    before. And I'm very happy that you're
    here and... Kurt Opsahl. Please, let us
  • 1:05 - 1:09
    know what's up. Thank you.
  • 1:09 - 1:12
    Kurt: Thank you. Hello, everybody, my name
    is Kurt, also I'm the deputy executive
  • 1:12 - 1:17
    director general counsel of the Electronic
    Frontier Foundation. I'm here to talk to
  • 1:17 - 1:22
    you about observing police surveillance of
    protests. So why do we want to observe
  • 1:22 - 1:27
    police at protests? Well, because protests
    are political expression. And the Council
  • 1:27 - 1:31
    of Europe put it the right of individuals
    to gather with other people and make their
  • 1:31 - 1:35
    collective voice heard is fundamental to a
    properly functioning democracy. And this
  • 1:35 - 1:39
    is a right which is protected by the
    European Convention on Human Rights and
  • 1:39 - 1:44
    other international rights treaties. But
    surveillance - consumer's rights. So
  • 1:44 - 1:48
    knowing what technologies are used can
    help you understand the threats to your
  • 1:48 - 1:53
    privacy and security, as well as provide
    tools to advocate for limits on police use
  • 1:53 - 1:56
    of surveillance; surveillance that may
    chill people's right to express themselves
  • 1:56 - 2:01
    on these public issues. Just as an analog
    surveillance historically has been used as
  • 2:01 - 2:05
    a tool of repression. Nowadays,
    policymakers and the public have to
  • 2:05 - 2:10
    understand that the threat posed by
    emerging technologies is a danger to human
  • 2:10 - 2:14
    rights, and they need to understand that
    to successfully defend human rights in the
  • 2:14 - 2:19
    digital age. So journalists who are
    reporting on protest action should know
  • 2:19 - 2:24
    the surveillance that is in use. Activists
    who are advocating for limitations on
  • 2:24 - 2:28
    police use of surveillance need to know
    what surveillance is being used to
  • 2:28 - 2:32
    effectively advocate. And legal observers
    may need to document the use of
  • 2:32 - 2:36
    surveillance at protests in order to
    challenge the police actions at the
  • 2:36 - 2:39
    protest or challenge the police policies
    that are being used after the protest with
  • 2:39 - 2:44
    the footage they've obtained. So where are
    we going today? We're going to provide a
  • 2:44 - 2:49
    lot of information about various types of
    surveillance technologies in use by police
  • 2:49 - 2:55
    around the world. We're going to look at
    what the appearance is, how it works, what
  • 2:55 - 3:00
    kind of data they collect and how they're
    used by police. And at the end a few other
  • 3:00 - 3:05
    resources available for those who want to
    dive a little bit deeper on the topic. So
  • 3:05 - 3:10
    police surveillance technology is
    everywhere. It's on the police themselves,
  • 3:10 - 3:17
    on their vehicles, on the roadways. It
    could be above you in the air, surrounding
  • 3:17 - 3:22
    you in the environment, can be a lot of
    different places and you need to know
  • 3:22 - 3:26
    where. The police officers themselves
    often find in the form of either body worn
  • 3:26 - 3:31
    cameras or additional devices that they're
    using, which are basically mobile
  • 3:31 - 3:37
    biometric sensors. Body-Worn cameras or
    technology that's come out become more
  • 3:37 - 3:41
    popular over the last decade or so.
    Originally was something that was being
  • 3:41 - 3:47
    used as a way to provide police
    accountability that give a record of their
  • 3:47 - 3:51
    interactions with the public. And maybe,
    for example, could you show police
  • 3:51 - 3:55
    brutality or maybe deter police brutality?
    But there are two-way streets: these are
  • 3:55 - 3:59
    often used to surveil protesters, and the
    footage may later be used to support
  • 3:59 - 4:09
    arrests and charges. For example, we use
    this NPR story where after a rally weeks
  • 4:09 - 4:16
    later, the police went identifying people
    through body cam footage and brought
  • 4:16 - 4:20
    action against them for obstructing the
    roadway, part of the civil disobedience of
  • 4:20 - 4:28
    the protest, based on finding them on the
    body camera footage. They can be in a all
  • 4:28 - 4:33
    variety of places, so if you're looking
    for Body-Worn cameras, you got to look at
  • 4:33 - 4:37
    different places to see where they might
    be. So a couple of places they might see
  • 4:37 - 4:41
    them: on the head - head mounted camera.
    So it might be on the glasses on the side,
  • 4:41 - 4:47
    could be a lens right in the center. The
    center one is pretty hard to find, but the
  • 4:47 - 4:52
    ones on the side or might be part of the
    glasses or the helmet they're wearing are
  • 4:52 - 4:56
    generally pretty obvious. These ones,
    they're not particularly common, but they
  • 4:56 - 5:04
    do happen. Shoulder mounted cameras also a
    little bit less common, but they have an
  • 5:04 - 5:08
    interesting feature: in this case they're
    using the Warrior 360 from Blue Line
  • 5:08 - 5:15
    Innovations as an example, and it is a
    dome camera that looks all directions, 360
  • 5:15 - 5:21
    degrees off the officer's left shoulder.
    All most cameras like a front facing
  • 5:21 - 5:28
    camera will capture only 180 degrees.
    Chest mounted cameras are the most common
  • 5:28 - 5:35
    and these are being used very, very
    widely. We give some examples here from
  • 5:35 - 5:44
    Amsterdam, Middelburg and from West
    Midlands Police in the EU... or soon to be
  • 5:44 - 5:50
    not in EU for I guess Britain. And there
    are several known types: Excelon, Wolfcom
  • 5:50 - 5:56
    and Watchguard are very common. They
    operate in similar manners, though, with
  • 5:56 - 6:03
    some differences. And you can take a look
    at some of the examples that are available
  • 6:03 - 6:07
    to those companies webpages where they
    will explain the products they have an
  • 6:07 - 6:11
    offer and see what matches up for your
    jurisdiction. Or you can also look in for
  • 6:11 - 6:15
    news article. Oftentimes there's a news
    article about what may the first policy to
  • 6:15 - 6:21
    bring Body_Worn cameras is introduced in a
    particular police department. The're also
  • 6:21 - 6:26
    smartphone based cameras, and these are
    kind of the low end, it's basically just
  • 6:26 - 6:30
    an Android cell phone using its internal
    camera with an app that does recording
  • 6:30 - 6:36
    placed in a pocket. So the camera is a
    little bit above the clock and you can see
  • 6:36 - 6:40
    forward. But it's also a very subtle
    technique. And it could be easily confused
  • 6:40 - 6:44
    if you were looking for someone just
    starting their phone to their pocket. It
  • 6:44 - 6:48
    also might be clipped somewhere on the on
    their uniform. But if you see anything
  • 6:48 - 6:53
    where the camera is facing outward and
    it's attached to the officer, there's a
  • 6:53 - 6:58
    good chance that that is a Body-Worn
    camera and the setup is on play. Last of
  • 6:58 - 7:01
    the Body-Worn cameras will talk about the
    semi-obscured cams. So this is an example
  • 7:01 - 7:07
    for coverable Body-Worn,
    Body-Worn Utility, and it is
  • 7:07 - 7:14
    partially concealed, basically looks like
    a button on someone's uniform that if
  • 7:14 - 7:19
    you're not looking closely, you might not
    notice. But if you see, if you know, it
  • 7:19 - 7:23
    appears where you would expect actually
    not to have a button, it's slightly
  • 7:23 - 7:26
    larger, looks a little bit different. It
    looks like a camera if you look closely.
  • 7:26 - 7:29
    But if you're looking at a distance,
    you're not particularly paying attention.
  • 7:29 - 7:35
    You might not see it at all. In addition
    to Body-Worn cameras, there are often used
  • 7:35 - 7:44
    mobile biometric devices, so these can be
    handheld scanners, could be a tablet or a
  • 7:44 - 7:51
    camera phone, and in some cases it just is
    a camera, which had an applicable app on
  • 7:51 - 7:58
    it. But we'll see that... so how to tell
    whether they're using a phone or whether
  • 7:58 - 8:04
    using as a biometric scanner? By the body
    language. So, for example, if the police
  • 8:04 - 8:09
    officer is holding up the phone trying to
    capture someone's face, that is most
  • 8:09 - 8:14
    likely because they have a capturing of
    photo and they may be connecting that to a
  • 8:14 - 8:22
    facial recognition application. And you
    also will see mobile fingerprinting. So as
  • 8:22 - 8:26
    an example, in the United Kingdom, they
    have an app on the officer's phone
  • 8:26 - 8:32
    combined with a fingerprint scanning
    device and takes the people's fingerprints
  • 8:32 - 8:37
    and checks them against some databases.
    One is a database of everyone that police
  • 8:37 - 8:40
    have detained, putting them into the
    database and then checking against it for
  • 8:40 - 8:46
    new people. And the other one is a
    database for immigration, collected at the
  • 8:46 - 8:52
    border when someone comes into the UK. And
    this allows the police to do a very rapid
  • 8:52 - 8:59
    check of their records on somebody in the
    field. Some of these devices are
  • 8:59 - 9:04
    multimodal. We'll do both of them to be
    able to do fingerprints and take photos
  • 9:04 - 9:11
    for facial recognition. This here is the
    Dataworks Plus Evolution - does it both,
  • 9:11 - 9:19
    and that can be convenient for the
    officers, but it's a little bit more
  • 9:19 - 9:25
    dangerous to civil liberties. And some of
    the Body-Worn cameras, in this example
  • 9:25 - 9:33
    Wolfcam, has a biometric capability built
    in facial recognition so it can use its
  • 9:33 - 9:37
    regular camera functions and of course,
    all of them to take the picture. That
  • 9:37 - 9:41
    picture could be uploaded to a database
    and facial recognition will be done later.
  • 9:41 - 9:47
    But this one is designed to streamline
    that process. So take a moment, as an
  • 9:47 - 9:52
    aside, to talk about facial recognition in
    Europe per Algorithmwatch. The
  • 9:52 - 9:56
    organization says that there are at least
    11 police agencies in Europe who use
  • 9:56 - 10:03
    facial recognition. I show them on the map
    here. The UK Court of Appeal found that
  • 10:03 - 10:08
    automatic facial recognition technology
    used by the South Wales police was not
  • 10:08 - 10:14
    lawful. However, elsewhere in the UK, they
    are still using it. The Metropolitan
  • 10:14 - 10:21
    Police in London is doing a life facial
    recognition throughout the city of London,
  • 10:21 - 10:25
    and it contends that the situation is
    distinguishable from South Wales. So that
  • 10:25 - 10:31
    doesn't apply to them. We'll see how that
    turns out. There's also been some pressure
  • 10:31 - 10:36
    on the European Commission to put a ban in
    place or put restrictions on facial
  • 10:36 - 10:43
    recognition. And in September, there was a
    quote from the commissioners saying that
  • 10:43 - 10:45
    they were considering whether we need
    additional safeguards or whether we need
  • 10:45 - 10:51
    to go further and not allow facial
    recognition cases in certain areas or even
  • 10:51 - 10:55
    temporarily, which is not a particularly
    strong statement. But at least they are
  • 10:55 - 11:00
    considering the idea and something that
    one can advocate for the United States, a
  • 11:00 - 11:05
    number of jurisdictions at the local
    level, cities have put restrictions on
  • 11:05 - 11:09
    their police departments so they cannot
    use facial recognition. It's a growing
  • 11:09 - 11:15
    movement. And while a national or
    international law that would limit police
  • 11:15 - 11:19
    use of facial recognition would be best
    for civil liberties, you can also start at
  • 11:19 - 11:24
    your local level. All right, what we
    wouldn't be on the police officers
  • 11:24 - 11:29
    ourselves, whereelse - vehicles and
    roadways and this can come up for the
  • 11:29 - 11:33
    vehicles, roadways adjacent to the
    protests and within the protests
  • 11:33 - 11:39
    themselves. So adjacent to the protests is
    looking at the exits and entrances to the
  • 11:39 - 11:45
    protest areas. And they may use existing
    ANPR or place new ANPR, or ALPR -
  • 11:45 - 11:50
    automated numberplate reserve called ALPR
    in the United States. These are cameras.
  • 11:50 - 11:55
    And they pointed towards a roadway to
    where cars will be. They are designed to
  • 11:55 - 12:02
    take a picture, determine what the license
    plate / number plate is, optical character
  • 12:02 - 12:06
    resolution. They will eventually...
    recognition that will eventually be able
  • 12:06 - 12:12
    to see what it is, check the database and
    find out who registered for that car. And
  • 12:12 - 12:18
    it can be uploaded to a central server for
    police to search, can add vehicles to a
  • 12:18 - 12:24
    watch list. It is a very powerful tool
    because many people are using cars to get
  • 12:24 - 12:30
    to and from protests. And even if they're
    going in in a group, at least one member
  • 12:30 - 12:37
    of the group would have to have the car.
    And it has been used to go after someone
  • 12:37 - 12:41
    after protest. So in this case, it was
    from 11 of years back. A citizen of the UK
  • 12:41 - 12:48
    went to a protest and was later pulled
    over because they had captured the license
  • 12:48 - 12:56
    plate while the protest added to database
    and then used that to pull them on. So if
  • 12:56 - 13:01
    there is a protest, the police might come
    in and use a portable number plate reader.
  • 13:01 - 13:08
    So here's some examples of what they might
    look like either on a tripod or on a
  • 13:08 - 13:13
    trailer, and they can set these up
    basically anywhere. They would often be
  • 13:13 - 13:18
    used at the entrance or exit to the zone
    in which the protesters expected, to see
  • 13:18 - 13:25
    who's coming in, coming out during the
    protest time period and try to capture the
  • 13:25 - 13:32
    crowd through their license plates. It
    also now becoming more and more common on
  • 13:32 - 13:37
    police cars. You can see a couple of
    examples we have here. One - it shows a
  • 13:37 - 13:44
    rather obvious in the top one, it is a UK
    police car. And see, the camera sticks
  • 13:44 - 13:50
    out, fairly obvious that they have a
    camera on the light bar; the lower from
  • 13:50 - 13:55
    the French police - less obvious, it looks
    like an ordinary light bar. You might be
  • 13:55 - 14:00
    able to tell that it's a little bit
    different than some other ones, because it
  • 14:00 - 14:05
    has sort of a funny thing in the center,
    but it's a pretty subtle approach. So
  • 14:05 - 14:09
    there's all kinds, they might also be
    mounted on the hood of a trunk and may be
  • 14:09 - 14:14
    more or less obvious. But take a look
    at... close and also take a look at what
  • 14:14 - 14:18
    the police cars behavior. If they are
    driving, for example, slowly down the
  • 14:18 - 14:22
    street next to a whole bunch of parked
    car, as it may be that they are doing
  • 14:22 - 14:25
    "gridding", a practice known as
    "gridding", where they are looking for
  • 14:25 - 14:32
    capturing every parked car's license plate
    in a particular zone. Slow and steady in
  • 14:32 - 14:39
    order to do that. And then there are the
    fixed number plate readers, these are
  • 14:39 - 14:47
    often at traffic lights and intersections
    on the highways, any sort of high speed
  • 14:47 - 14:52
    toll road will have them. They also are...
    here, they're used for other purposes,
  • 14:52 - 15:00
    like to establish fines, to check border
    crossings. They are very common fixtures
  • 15:00 - 15:06
    on on roadways. So a protest happens in a
    zone that already has them. The police
  • 15:06 - 15:11
    will be able to access that information
    and know who entered or exited that area
  • 15:11 - 15:20
    to look around. All right, and then within
    the protest itself. There may be adding
  • 15:20 - 15:26
    additional surveillance capacities, so in
    this example, we have a... the Santa Fe
  • 15:26 - 15:35
    Police Department knew about a protest
    that was protesting a statue and some
  • 15:35 - 15:38
    people would take action to remove the
    statue. So in order to capture that
  • 15:38 - 15:43
    through surveillance, they placed this
    trailer, which has a number of camera and
  • 15:43 - 15:50
    audio capabilities and just have rolled it
    in right next to the statue to capture the
  • 15:50 - 15:58
    protest action. And these cameras can come
    in a variety of forms. In this case we got
  • 15:58 - 16:07
    watch towers. Personal controling cameras
    can be in the watchtower or they can be
  • 16:07 - 16:12
    operating remotely. As you can see, they
    are using a scissor jack to raise it about
  • 16:12 - 16:17
    that van, the other one is an assembly.
    It's not easy for someone to get in and
  • 16:17 - 16:22
    out of there. So it may have a person, but
    somehow inconvenient to actually have a
  • 16:22 - 16:27
    person inside these watchtowers, but it's
    much more convenient to use their built-In
  • 16:27 - 16:32
    surveillance capabilities and remotely
    observe the area around the watchtower
  • 16:32 - 16:38
    with those cameras. And then there also
    pure surveillance units. This is an
  • 16:38 - 16:48
    example here showing four cameras raised
    pole and just adding surveillance
  • 16:48 - 16:58
    capability basically to anywhere. Some of
    them are much more complex: thermal
  • 16:58 - 17:05
    imaging cameras. Thermal imaging often
    come from the leading company is FLIR, it
  • 17:05 - 17:09
    stands for "Forward-looking Infrared".
    FLIR system makes a lot of these devices
  • 17:09 - 17:14
    and makes them available to police
    departments. Thermal imaging cameras allow
  • 17:14 - 17:18
    the police to be able to conduct
    surveillance after dark where the lighting
  • 17:18 - 17:23
    is poor, where they might not be able to
    identify individuals very easily. Instead,
  • 17:23 - 17:29
    they can use their heat signature and be
    able to continue to monitor the protest
  • 17:29 - 17:32
    when the lighting conditions are less and
    a lot of things on protest will happen at
  • 17:32 - 17:38
    night, candlelight vigils were
    commonplace. So police will be looking to
  • 17:38 - 17:42
    thermal imaging to make sure that they
    have strong surveillance capabilities
  • 17:42 - 17:50
    after dark. Another thing you might see at
    a protest is an emergency command vehicle.
  • 17:50 - 17:55
    These are often massive bus sized vehicles
    and they do have some surveillance
  • 17:55 - 17:59
    capabilities. They might have some
    cameras, but more often they are command
  • 17:59 - 18:03
    and control. So they are the places where
    somebody would be receiving footage from
  • 18:03 - 18:11
    cameras and operating cameras remotely,
    like a communications with another people
  • 18:11 - 18:16
    in the field. They also may have some
    built in capabilities and they may provide
  • 18:16 - 18:20
    the focal point, were a local connection,
    they're getting information from local
  • 18:20 - 18:27
    devices and then they have the uplink in
    the command center. One thing I wanted to
  • 18:27 - 18:31
    point out, it's a common misconception or
    something that comes up a lot where people
  • 18:31 - 18:36
    are concerned about police surveillance,
    as we'll see an unmarked vehicle or a van
  • 18:36 - 18:42
    with no windows. It may even have some
    antennas or satellite. And well that is
  • 18:42 - 18:47
    possibly an undercover police vehicle, you
    shouldn't assume that vehicle belongs to
  • 18:47 - 18:53
    law enforcement. That could very easily be
    a news media vehicle. News media also goes
  • 18:53 - 18:59
    to protests. They also have satellite
    uplinks and antennas, look very similar.
  • 18:59 - 19:05
    And in some cases, the media has a
    security situation there. They're worried
  • 19:05 - 19:12
    that there may be theft of equipment and
    they have unmarked vans. So it is worth
  • 19:12 - 19:16
    noting that there is an unmarked vehicle,
    but you shouldn't necessarily assume that
  • 19:16 - 19:21
    it is a police unmarked vehicle. Also,
    sometimes people see especially they see
  • 19:21 - 19:26
    some antennas or satellite dish vehicles
    that maybe that's were "stingrays". This
  • 19:26 - 19:33
    is a misconception. Stingrays are pretty
    small and they don't require an external
  • 19:33 - 19:40
    antenna. You could put a stingray inside a
    trunk of a car, maybe it will be a
  • 19:40 - 19:47
    briefcase sized. So it would be unlikely
    that if you're going to use a stingray or
  • 19:47 - 19:52
    similar, IMSI-catcher that you would
    want to put it in the vehicle. I don't
  • 19:52 - 19:59
    need to put in a vehicle that has its own
    antenna. There have been not very much
  • 19:59 - 20:04
    documentation of these technologies being
    used in the US domestic protests. They
  • 20:04 - 20:09
    have been used, we know it, in some
    protests and more authoritarian countries.
  • 20:09 - 20:17
    So it's unclear how often they will are
    being used and they are very dangerous in
  • 20:17 - 20:21
    the surveillance. So It's aim is
    capturing, it is able to determine what
  • 20:21 - 20:26
    cell phones are nearby, get a unique
    identifier with that cell phone, and in
  • 20:26 - 20:30
    many cases be able to use that information
    to determine while individuals president
  • 20:30 - 20:36
    protests. That information has been used
    after some protests in Ukraine, for
  • 20:36 - 20:40
    example, to send a text message to people
    telling them: we're onto you, we know you
  • 20:40 - 20:45
    were there, which can be very intimidating
    to individuals. But the challenge is that
  • 20:45 - 20:49
    you're trying to observe police
    surveillance in the protest, it is hard
  • 20:49 - 20:54
    for you to observe it because they are
    often hidden. You may be able to find out
  • 20:54 - 20:58
    more information later through
    investigative journalism or public record
  • 20:58 - 21:02
    requests, or news reports. If somebody is
    prosecuted using that information, it may
  • 21:02 - 21:09
    become obvious. It is difficult to see it
    at the protest itself. So next category,
  • 21:09 - 21:16
    look it up in the sky. There are lots of
    forms of aerial surveillance or for the
  • 21:16 - 21:21
    agencies to surveil protests from above
    using traditional aircraft, on board
  • 21:21 - 21:27
    pilots and as well as remotely operated
    aerial systems - drones. Law enforcement
  • 21:27 - 21:31
    may also use these aerial vehicles to
    communicate with the crowd, to use the
  • 21:31 - 21:36
    loudspeakers to send a message to the
    crowd. Order them to disperse. And we've
  • 21:36 - 21:40
    seen this actually drones with
    loudspeakers being used by the German
  • 21:40 - 21:46
    police in order to tell people to stay
    apart - Corona That same technology can be
  • 21:46 - 21:52
    used for protests. And these planes and
    drones will often be equipped with high
  • 21:52 - 21:56
    definition cameras, capable of either
    extremely wide angle to get the whole
  • 21:56 - 22:02
    scene or an extreme zoom where they might
    be able to zoom in on a particular person,
  • 22:02 - 22:07
    particular license plate, and then use
    that data later, partnering that the
  • 22:07 - 22:13
    aircraft with license plate recognition,
    facial recognition, video analytics and
  • 22:13 - 22:21
    even a cell-site simulator inside the
    aircraft. And we know this has happened in
  • 22:21 - 22:31
    a recent protest in Texas. A Texas police
    drone got some footage of a protester
  • 22:31 - 22:36
    allegedly throwing a water bottle. They
    took that video, they took the picture,
  • 22:36 - 22:41
    put it out, offered a cash reward, an
    anonymous tip to turn the kid in and
  • 22:41 - 22:48
    protester was prosecuted. So police are
    definitely using these things to gather
  • 22:48 - 22:55
    information at protesters. So a common
    method for a larger police departments is
  • 22:55 - 23:00
    fixed-wing aircraft; for smaller ones -
    they may use private contractors to
  • 23:00 - 23:05
    provide these fixed-wing aircraft. So this
    is an example of the kind of plane you use
  • 23:05 - 23:09
    by a company called Persistent
    Surveillance Systems. It rents out a plane
  • 23:09 - 23:12
    like this, well not this exact one, you
    look up that tail number, it's going to be
  • 23:12 - 23:17
    to a different company. But the same model
    of the Cessna 207-A. And these will circle
  • 23:17 - 23:23
    around the protest using their cameras to
    observe protesters below. And the
  • 23:23 - 23:29
    advantage of planes is they can often
    circle for quite a long time and provide a
  • 23:29 - 23:36
    wide view on the area. Also, helicopters,
    helicopters will often be seen hovering
  • 23:36 - 23:41
    over a protest, they are a little bit
    easier to maneuver and be able to go
  • 23:41 - 23:47
    backwards and forwards over the protest
    that are used by police to continually
  • 23:47 - 23:52
    observe. And we'll use two examples here.
    One of them from the Oakland Police
  • 23:52 - 23:56
    Department, the other one from the
    Rineland Police Department. In both cases,
  • 23:56 - 24:02
    they have a FLIR attached to the
    helicopter, a forward looking infrared
  • 24:02 - 24:06
    that would allow them, in addition to
    regular camera capabilities, to use
  • 24:06 - 24:11
    thermal imaging to follow someone at a
    protest or follow what's going on after
  • 24:11 - 24:18
    dark. We can also see that some
    helicopters will have spotlights, so that
  • 24:18 - 24:24
    they can signal to officers on the ground
    who to follow, who do pay attention to.
  • 24:24 - 24:31
    Another thing for both fixed wing and
    helicopters: they look for the tail
  • 24:31 - 24:35
    number. In most jurisdictions, they're
    required to have a tail number visible,
  • 24:35 - 24:40
    and then you could look up that tail
    number on services like Flight Aware and
  • 24:40 - 24:44
    be able to find out further information
    about what that plane has been doing, what
  • 24:44 - 24:52
    the helicopter has been doing, as well as
    the ownership. Finally, drones. Drones are
  • 24:52 - 24:57
    becoming very commonplace because they're
    getting cheaper all the time and having
  • 24:57 - 25:02
    additional capacities; drones are also
    known as unmanned aerial vehicles - UAVs;
  • 25:02 - 25:09
    UAS - unmanned aerial systems and a lot of
    police departments are getting them for
  • 25:09 - 25:15
    their capabilities using what's called a
    quadrotor. And they can be controlled by
  • 25:15 - 25:21
    remote control, have a camera built into
    this and be useful for getting above the
  • 25:21 - 25:27
    scene view. So one way to spot it... well,
    first of all - just listen to it, they
  • 25:27 - 25:31
    make kind of have a distinctive noise,
    sometimes are really marked as police.
  • 25:31 - 25:38
    Also look for the pilots operating nearby.
    So oftentimes a patrol out there,
  • 25:38 - 25:42
    sometimes they are labeled like in the
    upper left there, it says "police drone
  • 25:42 - 25:47
    operator" - pretty easy to identify. All
    the times they might have like "drone",
  • 25:47 - 25:54
    "UAV", "aviation unit" on their uniform,
    or a nearby police vehicle. The other
  • 25:54 - 26:00
    thing is that if you identify a drone,
    there're often within line of sight is
  • 26:00 - 26:04
    going to be the operator. So when do you
    see the drone look around and see, if
  • 26:04 - 26:08
    someone has the controls in their hand, is
    looking up the drone, you can probably
  • 26:08 - 26:13
    identify the operator and go look for
    information that might have uniform about
  • 26:13 - 26:19
    who is operating that particular drone.
    But also, keep in mind, both for drones
  • 26:19 - 26:24
    and other aircraft, that it's not
    necessarily the police. Journalists and
  • 26:24 - 26:30
    activists will often fly drones over
    protest, news helicopters for a large
  • 26:30 - 26:35
    protests are going to be more common than
    police helicopters. And many times they
  • 26:35 - 26:40
    are labeled with picture of the BBC News
    Copter. But this means that just as you
  • 26:40 - 26:47
    see a helicopter that has both a camera
    and is flying over the protest, that does
  • 26:47 - 26:54
    not necessarily mean that it's a police
    helicopter. Also, the technology, which is
  • 26:54 - 27:00
    actually not very commonplace outside of
    protests in war zones, but - the
  • 27:00 - 27:05
    "Dronekiller" technology, which is
    basically a real gun that knocks drones
  • 27:05 - 27:11
    out of the sky, sending radio signals to
    interfere with the drones operation and
  • 27:11 - 27:19
    cause it to fall and crash. These have
    been used in Iraq and Afghanistan and the
  • 27:19 - 27:23
    technology could be certainly used, but we
    really haven't seen it used more freely.
  • 27:23 - 27:28
    Just wanted to tell you about it
    because... oh, my God, Dronekillers. All
  • 27:28 - 27:33
    right, last place to look for police
    technology - in the environment around
  • 27:33 - 27:39
    you. There will be in many places camera
    networks. So a lot of the cameras will see
  • 27:39 - 27:46
    a neighborhood will be private cameras,
    will be police cameras, will be cameras
  • 27:46 - 27:53
    being used by city, non police agencies.
    That can be a lot of cameras. This also
  • 27:53 - 27:56
    means that you're trying to observe what
    cameras are going on. There's too much
  • 27:56 - 28:00
    information. There'll be so many cameras
    in many areas that you could spend all
  • 28:00 - 28:04
    your time documenting, observing the
    cameras and these other things. So you
  • 28:04 - 28:07
    might not want to spend all your time
    paying attention to that, because you can
  • 28:07 - 28:12
    go back later at any point and see the
    fixed cameras. But there are a couple of
  • 28:12 - 28:17
    things that... first, identifying them for
    two different brands to identify. But
  • 28:17 - 28:22
    here's some information about the kinds of
    cameras that are available. Bullet cameras
  • 28:22 - 28:26
    are directional, so you can sort of see
    which way it's pointing and what it would
  • 28:26 - 28:30
    be covering from that. Then you have dome
    cameras, which are designed, so you can't
  • 28:30 - 28:35
    see which way it's pointing, or at least
    you can see maybe some of this area one
  • 28:35 - 28:39
    hundred and eighty degrees. But the exact
    direction is pointing is obscured by the
  • 28:39 - 28:46
    dome. Pan-Tilt-Zoom cameras can change
    which way they're pointing. They can
  • 28:46 - 28:52
    sometimes be coupled with a dome camera so
    that the dome camera can both change the
  • 28:52 - 28:59
    way it's looking and obscure which way its
    looking. Thermal imaging cameras and ALPR
  • 28:59 - 29:04
    cameras are also becoming a fixed
    locations and we are all having to do with
  • 29:04 - 29:10
    traffic control. Thermal is actually not
    as common. That is mostly used as a
  • 29:10 - 29:20
    technology that is vehicles, is kind of
    expensive. But in this case, the picture
  • 29:20 - 29:25
    shown is a thermal imaging camera. So
    sometimes people will go to that
  • 29:25 - 29:32
    additional expense. And one subcategory of
    all the cameras that are environment are
  • 29:32 - 29:37
    going to be police observation devices, so
    the category of sets of sensors which are
  • 29:37 - 29:43
    operated by the police and they may
    included multiple cameras, gunshot
  • 29:43 - 29:49
    detection, facial recognition. For
    example, in the United Kingdom, say in the
  • 29:49 - 29:53
    city of London, is doing live facial
    recognition as a police observation
  • 29:53 - 29:59
    devices are a collection of these cameras
    in one location. Sometimes they're marked
  • 29:59 - 30:08
    as police, sometimes they are not. And
    there is the way you would suspect that
  • 30:08 - 30:13
    it's a police observation device is - if
    it has a lot of different sensors in one
  • 30:13 - 30:18
    location trying to cover the whole ground
    around, then that is the kind of thing you
  • 30:18 - 30:24
    would see most frequently from a police
    office image. And then finally, Smart
  • 30:24 - 30:28
    Street Lights. The Smart Street Lights
    have a number of wonderful applications.
  • 30:28 - 30:34
    Some initiatives like in the US Smart
    Cities and the EU E-Street Initiative are
  • 30:34 - 30:38
    exploiting cities to use more Smart Street
    Lights, because they could turn down the
  • 30:38 - 30:44
    power usage when the light is less needed.
    And there's some advance towards a project
  • 30:44 - 30:50
    by the Arnold University of Applied
    Sciences has a technology, which will use
  • 30:50 - 30:55
    motion detection, sound detection. Being
    able to tell that there are people walking
  • 30:55 - 31:00
    nearby and brighten their path. Sounds
    great. But the same kind of technology
  • 31:00 - 31:06
    being able to detect motion, being able to
    have audio signals, video signals - can be
  • 31:06 - 31:10
    used for surveillance. So here on the
    slide we show the smart lighting
  • 31:10 - 31:16
    capabilities being advertised by Intel. In
    addition to some things that you might
  • 31:16 - 31:23
    expect, like being able to adjusted for
    traffic patterns, provide when needed.
  • 31:23 - 31:26
    They talk about crime
    investigations, monitor parking
  • 31:26 - 31:31
    violations, safety announcements that are
    coming from the smart cameras. So all of
  • 31:31 - 31:37
    these technologies are possible and
    hopefully this will not become a
  • 31:37 - 31:40
    commonplace use. But if it is, it would
    mean that a surveillance device is
  • 31:40 - 31:45
    everywhere along every street where
    they're putting these devices. Wich
  • 31:45 - 31:49
    lightning the city you are lightning the
    city with surveillance. So has it been
  • 31:49 - 31:56
    used? Yes. The city of San Diego had a
    number of protests surrounding the protest
  • 31:56 - 32:03
    around George Floyd, and they used these
    thirty five times. They searched
  • 32:03 - 32:08
    information gathered through the Smart
    Street Light Network for evidence in
  • 32:08 - 32:16
    criminal cases coming out of that protest.
    So what additional resources are there?
  • 32:16 - 32:19
    There's plenty of additional resources, if
    you wanted to try to read more - and I
  • 32:19 - 32:23
    encourage you to take this only as a
    starting point for a lot more to learn. So
  • 32:23 - 32:26
    we'll start out with a very important
    resource. If you're someone who's going to
  • 32:26 - 32:30
    go, whether as an activist, as a
    protester, as a journalist, you should
  • 32:30 - 32:38
    prepare yourself for some surveillance
    self defense: at ssd.eff.org we have an
  • 32:38 - 32:43
    "Attending a Protest" guide. Go there and
    learn important tips on protecting
  • 32:43 - 32:48
    yourself when you're going to protests.
    Put your device with fulldesk encryption:
  • 32:48 - 32:53
    a strong unique password, turning off the
    biometric unlock, use end-to-end
  • 32:53 - 32:59
    encryption for messages and calls, walking
    or taking a bicycle to get to the protest,
  • 32:59 - 33:04
    sort of a vehicle, which couldn't be
    subjected to a ANPR / ALPR device. Wear a
  • 33:04 - 33:11
    mask, you should wear a mask for Covid
    anyway. But if you wear a mask, get a big:
  • 33:11 - 33:17
    the larger the mask, the more it protects
    you. There is also recently a study that
  • 33:17 - 33:25
    showed that they're making efforts to try
    to make facial recognition continue on
  • 33:25 - 33:30
    despite people's use of masks. And there
    was a study that showed that red and black
  • 33:30 - 33:38
    masks were harder for the AI to be able to
    determine who was behind the mask. So wear
  • 33:38 - 33:43
    a red or black mask. If you get one that
    covers more of your face like a bandana,
  • 33:43 - 33:47
    it's going to be harder for the facial
    recognition algorithms. So do some things
  • 33:47 - 33:53
    to protect yourself, both from Covid and
    from surveillance. If you want to also
  • 33:53 - 33:59
    just practice it out, you can go to our
    Spot the Surveillance. This is an online
  • 33:59 - 34:06
    program, you can do the desktop version or
    virtual reality version, where it places
  • 34:06 - 34:11
    you in a virtual street corner with some
    surveillance devices nearby. And you can
  • 34:11 - 34:16
    look around and try to identify all of the
    surveillance devices that you see. It
  • 34:16 - 34:21
    takes just a few minutes to go through the
    exercise, but it's a good way to practice
  • 34:21 - 34:28
    your skills and identify what surveillance
    might be around on the street. And if you
  • 34:28 - 34:34
    want to get a lot more information about
    any of these devices, go to EFF Street-
  • 34:34 - 34:40
    Level Surveillance project: eff.org/sls -
    street level surveillance. This will
  • 34:40 - 34:46
    provide more detailed information about
    various technologies that are in use. That
  • 34:46 - 34:50
    can be a good starting point, especially
    if you found out what is being used in
  • 34:50 - 34:56
    your jurisdiction. Go there and find out
    more about it. And you can also find out
  • 34:56 - 35:02
    just what is going on more generally with
    these kinds of technologies: eff.org/sls.
  • 35:02 - 35:07
    All right. Well, thank you. That comes to
    the close of my talk. Thank you for
  • 35:07 - 35:19
    turning in. And now let me turn it over to
    my future self for Q&A. Thanks you.
  • 35:19 - 35:29
    Herald: Welcome back. Thanks so much Kurt.
    Now we have some time for questions and
  • 35:29 - 35:34
    it's getting more and more. I'm just
    hurrying up. OK, are there devices, apps
  • 35:34 - 35:39
    or services developed or run by private
    companies and who makes sure the data is
  • 35:39 - 35:46
    not directly sold to third parties?
    Kurt: So, yes, there are private networks.
  • 35:46 - 35:50
    And one of the things we talked about just
    now is there's a lot of private camera
  • 35:50 - 35:54
    networks that are providing information to
    the police, sometimes private networks
  • 35:54 - 35:59
    going through a registry where police from
    organizers ask people to volunteer, put
  • 35:59 - 36:03
    their information into a registry. So they
    are sort of explicitly saying they're
  • 36:03 - 36:07
    going to turn over their information to
    the police or other things like Amazon's
  • 36:07 - 36:12
    ring camera. They have been promoting it
    as a antitheft tool, trying to stop
  • 36:12 - 36:16
    package stuff stolen from doors. But this
    also is creating a panopticon of
  • 36:16 - 36:23
    everyone's doorbell camera. If they're all
    using ring will be provided... get the
  • 36:23 - 36:28
    video and will provide it to the police.
    So and many of these organizations, you
  • 36:28 - 36:32
    know, if they're larger than they will
    have some some privacy practices, probably
  • 36:32 - 36:37
    policies. But by and large, they will talk
    about the privacy of the person who owns
  • 36:37 - 36:44
    the marketplace and not really consider
    the bystanders, the people walking by. So
  • 36:44 - 36:48
    if you have a doorbell camera at your
    front door that can hear audio, so maybe
  • 36:48 - 36:52
    someone could ring your bell and say
    hello. It will also capture people walking
  • 36:52 - 37:00
    by and those people's privacy is important
    to be considered.
  • 37:00 - 37:06
    Herald: All right, then we have: what hope
    do we have against all this, which best
  • 37:06 - 37:11
    case legal countermeasures do we have by
    been attending protests? And the another
  • 37:11 - 37:17
    one, which I would connect directly: is it
    possible to intervene against surveillance
  • 37:17 - 37:21
    based on laws or presumption of innocence?
    Kurt: Yes.
  • 37:21 - 37:26
    Herald: I don't know if German laws are
    meant, but maybe you still can say
  • 37:26 - 37:28
    something?
    Kurt: Well, I mean, so there's many
  • 37:28 - 37:33
    different laws that might be an issue. I
    mean, we have an international audience
  • 37:33 - 37:36
    here, but I think there are some also
    basic human rights principles that apply
  • 37:36 - 37:41
    to many jurisdictions. But I would say
    actually one of the most effective tools
  • 37:41 - 37:45
    to push back against this kind of police
    surveillance is working locally with the,
  • 37:45 - 37:52
    like, a city, the mayor, the city council
    and a number of locations have passed
  • 37:52 - 37:56
    rules about what their police can do
    against their citizens. So putting
  • 37:56 - 38:01
    limitations on what police can do at the
    local level, where your activities in the
  • 38:01 - 38:07
    city, which you live, taking things to
    your representative government and saying
  • 38:07 - 38:11
    we need to have some limitations on this,
    we need to have it within civilian
  • 38:11 - 38:15
    controls for the police themselves are not
    deciding what technologies to use, but it
  • 38:15 - 38:18
    has to pass through an elected
    representative. And I think that is
  • 38:18 - 38:23
    probably one of the most effective ways to
    at least start change where you live. But
  • 38:23 - 38:27
    you can also try and promote that to your
    national legislature, state legislatures,
  • 38:27 - 38:33
    go up several levels. And one of the
    things that I hope comes out of this
  • 38:33 - 38:35
    guide, where people getting more
    information about what kind of
  • 38:35 - 38:39
    surveillance is available, so that they
    can go to their representatives, go
  • 38:39 - 38:43
    through the political process with the
    information of what tool use something
  • 38:43 - 38:48
    that they have drawn a line about. Go to
    your representative and say we need to
  • 38:48 - 38:52
    make sure that the information that
    they're gathered is being used in a manner
  • 38:52 - 38:56
    consistent with human rights principles.
    And we need civilian control from the
  • 38:56 - 39:01
    local government on how to do.
    Herald: Who's controlling the controler
  • 39:01 - 39:14
    instances, yes. We have more questions.
    OK, so the police operate equipment like
  • 39:14 - 39:18
    ANPR-reader IMSI-Catcher etc. , that get
    information that they could get in a
  • 39:18 - 39:26
    cheaper way, like reading traffic signs or
    license plates, or cell info from
  • 39:26 - 39:34
    operators. And is there a reason for that?
    Especially concerning EU, because US
  • 39:34 - 39:42
    differs a lot. And another question: has
    police in EU, US been known to use illegal
  • 39:42 - 39:50
    or questionable tech for surveillance?
    Kurt: So I think on the first question
  • 39:50 - 39:57
    about using things like ANPR to determine
    license plates, this technology is common
  • 39:57 - 40:03
    in the European Union, though by and large
    it is being put in place for other
  • 40:03 - 40:08
    reasons, not to get the protesters
    necessarily. They are looking for, you
  • 40:08 - 40:12
    know, making sure that people are paying a
    toll or might be a speed trap on the
  • 40:12 - 40:17
    autobahn, where it takes a picture of the
    license plate of anyone traveling over a
  • 40:17 - 40:23
    speed limit - in the places that have
    speed limits on the part of the autobahn.
  • 40:23 - 40:29
    And I think also it's being used for
    enforcement of things like traffic
  • 40:29 - 40:34
    citations: your cars parked on location
    too long. They know who to send the bill
  • 40:34 - 40:41
    to. And I think these technologies could
    be repurposed for surveillance. And that's
  • 40:41 - 40:45
    what we really need, is policies that are
    ensuring that if these things are being
  • 40:45 - 40:50
    used for a purpose, that the sort of the
    citizenship agrees with in that
  • 40:50 - 40:54
    jurisdiction to enforce parking, for
    example, that is not also being repurposed
  • 40:54 - 40:59
    against political activities and being
    used at a wider scale than it was
  • 40:59 - 41:04
    envisioned. Also, maybe, you know, it's
    not a good thing to have perfect parking
  • 41:04 - 41:08
    enforcement, you know, a lot of parking
    fines were based on the notion that, like,
  • 41:08 - 41:13
    you might not get caught every time and
    when you change it, a system where
  • 41:13 - 41:17
    previously the fines were set with the
    notion that a lot of people would get away
  • 41:17 - 41:21
    with it.. to I do, like, to make an
    example of those who didn't. And then you
  • 41:21 - 41:25
    changed that to perfect enforcement
    because the computer, the ANPR system,
  • 41:25 - 41:30
    surveillance knows exactly the minute that
    a fine is due and then assesses that fine.
  • 41:30 - 41:34
    That actually changes the dynamic of power
    between citizenship and the state
  • 41:34 - 41:39
    significantly. And it will all be freeze
    and forms of well, we're just trying to
  • 41:39 - 41:42
    enforce the existing laws. How could you
    be against that? But really, it changes
  • 41:42 - 41:46
    the dynamic. And it's something that for
    those who want to be an activist on this,
  • 41:46 - 41:50
    again, talk to your local jurisdiction and
    try and make sure that these things have
  • 41:50 - 41:53
    safe and sane policies that respect human
    rights.
  • 41:53 - 42:01
    Herald: So I would interpret that like
    prevention of... don't come on the idea
  • 42:01 - 42:06
    that you need to to protect your data,
    right? Fun.
  • 42:06 - 42:10
    Kurt: And just turning to the another one.
    Do we have information about whether
  • 42:10 - 42:15
    police are misusing these technologies?
    So, I mean, there's some isolated examples
  • 42:15 - 42:19
    where people have misused their
    technologies. And I use a couple of them
  • 42:19 - 42:23
    in the slides. And there was someone who
    went to a political protest. Their car was
  • 42:23 - 42:30
    put into a database to get pulled over
    later. And then also in South Wales, the
  • 42:30 - 42:37
    court found that there the police use of
    facial recognition was in violation of UK
  • 42:37 - 42:42
    law, though, as I noted, not the
    Metropolitan Police in London don't agree
  • 42:42 - 42:45
    with that. They say it doesn't apply to
    them. And I think actually use of facial
  • 42:45 - 42:50
    recognition technologies is a very
    tempting thing by police. They want to use
  • 42:50 - 42:56
    it as much as possible, make it easy for
    them. And I think you will see that. But
  • 42:56 - 43:01
    the other piece of this is unless there
    are rules that say here are limitations on
  • 43:01 - 43:06
    how you can use these technologies and
    they can use them without having to risk
  • 43:06 - 43:11
    violating them. So we need to have those
    rules in place. I hope that the Council of
  • 43:11 - 43:17
    Europe puts at least a moratorium on
    facial recognition for use for police. And
  • 43:17 - 43:23
    until we can figure out how to use this
    technology safely, it's kind of cool that
  • 43:23 - 43:26
    you can unlock your phone in your face
    without having to type in a password,
  • 43:26 - 43:30
    but... we want to make sure that
    technology is used properly.
  • 43:30 - 43:35
    Herald: OK, so I think you're going to be
    around in the 2D world. You're going to
  • 43:35 - 43:41
    explore that, you've told me before. Yeah,
    there's more questions. I hope maybe you
  • 43:41 - 43:47
    find him in the 2D world and you just ask
    him there. Thanks so much. Thanks so much.
  • 43:47 - 43:53
    Very nice having you. Bye Kurt.
    Kurt: Bye.
  • 43:53 - 43:53
    rC3 postroll music
  • 43:53 - 44:36
    Subtitles created by c3subtitles.de
    in the year 2021. Join, and help us!
Title:
#rC3 - Spot the Surveillance
Description:

more » « less
Video Language:
English
Duration:
44:31

English subtitles

Revisions Compare revisions