Saturday, September 20, 2014

License Plate Scanners

Many agencies use license plate scanners to scan license plates and determine if a car is wanted for some reason.  These automated devices work very well to alert officers particularly to stolen cars that they might drive past on the road or in a parking lot.  I think it is a great piece of technology.

Like many new technologies there are some things that need to be decided about their use.  I think there are a few procedures that should be in place to insure the information is not misused.  First, the information should only be made available to police officers and other police employees who have official reasons to access the data.

The information should only be stored for as long as it is reasonable from a law enforcement perspective.  I think keeping the data for more than a year is not reasonable, unless it is for evidence.  I think after a year the data should be erased or the media destroyed in a secure manner.  The data should not generally be released to anyone, even the people who have been tracked, unless doing so serves a law enforcement purpose; that's what the SGT Says.

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