Minnesota House passes protections on vehicle tracking, data misuse

  • Article by: Eric Roper , Star Tribune
  • Updated: May 17, 2013 - 10:55 PM

House bill would limit use of data from license plate readers, which cops use to spot criminals.

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csjohn1May. 18, 13 8:29 AM

As the law now reads no warrant is required to access license plate data. While I believe that the fear of a police state is way overblown I also believe that a court should be able to assess probable cause in accessing historic license plate data. Why not keep it longer, and absolutely restrict the circumstances of access, except in the case of pending criminal investigations

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luxaeternaMay. 18, 13 9:38 AM

Who wants to live in a society in which your every move is tracked by police? This is not Iran, and we have to make sure that "catching criminals" is not used as an excuse for government to slowly change America into a police state.

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jbpaperMay. 18, 13 9:54 AM

"...including the names of any employees who were disciplined."-----So far, that's a pretty short list.

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jbpaperMay. 18, 13 9:56 AM

I remember when these first came out and they said they were going to be used to automatically "run" a license plate so that the office could focus on driving. Not once did they say anything about saving the information.

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davehougMay. 18, 13 1:05 PM

Now you understand why 'universal background checks' raises red flags. People know some want to trace every gun like a car. Lending a shotgun to a friend for duck hunting, selling a gun to a cousin, passing down guns all can be changed by 'universal background checks'. Ask those whose gun permit's home addresses were posted on an interactive map if data can be mis-used.

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halfabubbleMay. 18, 13 4:55 PM

The argument that this data would help keep track of where a criminal has been is a ruse, a criminal can catch a bus, call a cab, get a ride with a friend, ride a bike, etc. without moving their vehicle. As it stands now, the police will use cell phone data that they can obtain from the wireless companies for a better picture of where someone was and when they were there. So, the only real value this technology has is in the immediate moment the plate is scanned, is this a stolen vehicle? Is this someone wanted in a criminal case? Then yes, scan them, and tag them, but there is no need for this data the second after a "no hit" evaluation has returned.

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jd55604May. 18, 13 7:19 PM

halfabubble, some of us don't feel that being scanned or tagged on a regular basis is compatible with living in a free country. The roads belong to the people not the state patrol. License plates or drivers should not be "scanned" unless an LE officer has probable cause or at least an articulable fact as to why they believe the individual might be involved in criminality. Sorry but driving 56 in a 55 or not wearing a seatbelt shouldn't mandate a criminality scan.

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