The Potential of Drones in Agriculture

For many years, farming has been the fruit of manual labor. With the advancement of technology in everyday life, this may soon not be the case. Enter agricultural drones. Though drones are often associated with surveillance or warfare, these aerial devices can serve a variety of purposes. In an article in The Boston Globe, the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International states that, “agriculture drones are expected to make up 80 percent of the future commercial market.” There is plenty of potential for drones in agriculture, but one aspect, that of Crop Surveillance and Aerial Imaging, stand out far more than others.… [Read more]

Espionage Act, Patriot Act and Criminalization of Journalism

Former National Security Agency (NSA) computer contractor, and whistleblower du jour, Edward Snowden left Hong Kong on June 23 for Moscow. He is now seeking political asylum in either Iceland, Ecuador or Venezuela. Snowden has been charged with three felonies by the U.S. Department Of Justice after leaking NSA documents to two newspapers. The reports outline the agency’s daily collection of the phone records of American citizens.… [Read more]

Snowden, Surveillance and Snooping: How Private is Your Phone?

That mobile phone you love using may be spilling your secrets. Earlier this year, based on documents leaked by Edward Snowden, we learned that the National Security Agency (NSA) is watching our phone use and who we talk to, and listening to our conversations. Is this legal? Does this infringe on our privacy? Are there ways around being watched?… [Read more]

Don’t Kill The Messenger

Since Edward Snowden‘s ‘confessions of an NSA analyst’ I’ve been feeling like I’m trapped inside Tony Scott’s 1988 flick, Enemy of the State. Irony is it’s fifteen years later. In the last two weeks I’ve read and heard Snowden called everything from a terrorist to spy to a narcissist. I’ve even listened to an elected official call for the prosecution (with a straight face) of the journalist who interviewed Snowden.… [Read more]

The House voted to invade your privacy.

Congress has been busy…not passing gun control legislation, mind you, but busy all the same. While national attention was focused elsewhere during this week, the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) passed in the US House of Representatives by a vote of 288 – 127. The bill must pass the Senate, and overcome President Obama’s threat to veto on the Act on civil liberties grounds, before it becomes law.… [Read more]

RFID School Tags: A Slippery Slope to 24-7 State Surveillance

On Tuesday August 4, 2009 Associate Attorney General Tom Perrelli gave a speech at the National Conference for the Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools addressing the issue of truancy in public schools and the need for diverse and unconventional solutions.

Attorney General Holder really drives home to all of us that when we think about law enforcement, we need to think broadly….I know that your goal is education, but schools also play a key role in law enforcement in any number of ways.… [Read more]