Tiburon, California Is Watching You!

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer

There are only two roads going in and out of Tiburon, California, a feature the Tiburon city council wants to exploit to give citizens a sense of total security. Accordingly, they have spent $200,000 on six cameras which will record the license plate numbers of every car driving in and out. Though Tiburon is located on the tip of a peninsula in the San Francisco Bay in toney Marin County, and has low crime statistics (especially compared to the greater Bay Area), council members insist that this only makes the impact of crime more noticable. “If you’re out and about the way I am, every day you run into someone who was affected by a crime or knows someone who was,” Tiburon Mayor Alice Fredricks tells NPR. “So it’s real.”And though cameras are supposed to purge their data every eight hours, UC Berkley technology and public policy expert Jennifer King explains that such initiatives rarely maintain their original parameters, and that data can even be subpoenaed for civil proceedings like divorce trials.

They may start today by keeping it eight hours, but I’ll almost bet you that what they’ll find is that somebody will come back and go, ‘If only we had the data from those cameras.’ We call it ‘scope creep’ in the technology world. That scope can really crawl, really grow very quickly.

[Hat Tip: ClutchCarGo]

Edward Niedermeyer
Edward Niedermeyer

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  • Porschespeed Porschespeed on Nov 25, 2009

    Wayyy OT... Those who live in the Bay Area, have you driven Hwy 9 from San Jose down to the 'Cruz? Or at least to boulder Creek? I do so miss my X1/9 in combination with that road...

    • Sitting@home Sitting@home on Nov 25, 2009

      My favorite night drive is Hwy 9. One day I'll go over the edge at one of the hairpins and not be found for a week. I'll have to ask some of those ruffians where they park in Tiburon. I gave up looking for parking spots years ago and just catch the ferry from SF now.

  • Ihatetrees Ihatetrees on Nov 26, 2009

    Meh. Welcome to the digital camera future. In a dozen years, every private drive, parking lot, or public entrance will be monitored to the nines. As local apartment owner told me - to rent to responsible young women the more security cameras, the better. I'll admit that the government having this data (and keeping it secure and accurate) is an issue. (And I'd be more worried about the ability to insert false photo data than record all data accurately).

  • 2Goldens 2Goldens on Nov 26, 2009

    Hello 1984!