Thursday, October 9, 2008

Data Mining...Stop Big Brother From Watching

Data mining is the disturbing practice of law enforcement gathering information in an effort to predict future crimes. Predict future crimes? Wasn't that a Tom Cruise movie?
From ACLU Blog
Yesterday, a report on data mining was released by the Committee on Technical and Privacy Dimensions of Information for Terrorism Prevention and Other National Goals (a.k.a.: CTPDITPONG). The committee was formed by the National Research Council at the behest of the Department of Homeland Security to study the effectiveness of data mining techniques currently in place...
Turns out the committee feels pretty much the same way we do. Its report "Protecting Individual Privacy in the Struggle Against Terrorists" outlines several recommendations and, frankly, they make a lot of sense. To quote our release:
The committee made several recommendations in the report including greater external oversight of information gathering programs, a framework for both classified and unclassified programs and an emphasis on the quality, not quantity, of data.The report also discourages using behavioral patterns as a predictive measure, and considers any program attempting to assess an individual’s state of mind as suspect.The committee briefed both the DHS and the National Science Foundation (the sponsors of the report) but has not received any feedback.

Full Article Here

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