ARTICLE

Your Smart City Is Watching You

News Image By PNW Staff June 07, 2017
Share this article:

Cities around the country are quickly adapting "smart" technologies in efforts to bring about greater efficiency, reduce crime, identify at-risk areas, improve traffic, ensuring adequate downtown parking, and accomplish many more solutions to everyday big city problems.

This greater efficiency, though, may come at a prohibitive cost for the citizens. In fact, it's leading many citizens to take notice and begin asking questions on their own.

Consider these potential pros and cons and get involved in the conversation in your community before agreeing to go "smart" for various vital operations and infrastructures that will affect your life and the lives of your family.

What Types of Technology do Smart Cities Employ?

The term Smart City means different things to different people. For instance, the city of San Diego recently installed well over 3,200 cameras and microphones throughout the city so they could engage in large-scale use of this surveillance technology.

A mock-up Smart City located in the wilderness of New Mexico has tested the use of Stingray cell phone surveillance towers, Bluetooth monitoring, surveillance cameras, license plate readers, microphones, and more.


All of these technologies are being perfected under the guise of improving the lives of citizens, but there are many who believe, from the focus of Smart City spending, that the actual goals are a little more sinister.

Smart City Pros

The data gathered and collected in public places can help to improve the lives of ordinary citizens in larger cities. It's true. This can be used to reduce energy expenses for the city, ease traffic congestion, identify inefficiencies in public spending, and - in a perfect world - reduce the tax burdens for the population.

One fantastic example is in the city of Barcelona where using smart technology in water meters helped the city save $58 million per year.

It actually sounds quite good at first glance. After all, there is no harm in any of these things - and who doesn't want lower taxes for the multitudes. The problem is, that the government is using surveillance of these same people to accomplish those goals. Which brings us to the potential cons of a Smart City technology.

Smart City Cons

Although the cost to privacy in the world of surveillance cities is an important consideration, it isn't the only one to keep in mind. Some of the problems can have serious real-world consequences, like the following.

Security Vulnerabilities - Hacking is big business for criminals and big cities represent a gold mine of information and potential theft.


This makes them a target for a wide range of hackers including those that are simply out for a little mischief to those who would exploit safety vulnerabilities and others who might steal financial and personal information about cities and citizens alike.

Computer Bugs and Glitches - In a world of numbers, even the simplest of computer glitches can be costly. They can place 10-year-old boys on no-fly lists, cost millions of dollars, and send eviction notices to law abiding tax payers.

Power Failures - Without adequate fail-safes in place a power outage at a critical time can cause widespread devastation to the infrastructure of a Smart City. One hurricane, wildfire, tornado, or thunderstorm can cause a lot of problems for an unprepared city - even if it is a Smart City.

Totalitarian Control - what happens when a politician or even a corporation that has access to this data wants to use the information to empower themselves or even oppress others?

City data will also enable authorities to compile unimaginably detailed profiles of every single individual.

By analyzing information using data-science techniques, a city could learn not only the day-to-day routine of an individual but also his preferences, behavior and even emotional state. Cities could know more about people than they know about themselves.

Considering governments track records on snooping  look at the history of the NSA or KGB  the likelihood of smart cities not ending up as Orwellian as they sound is probably slim to none.

Smart Cities might sound like simple solutions for the future. Before you embrace the added efficiency that this technology promises, consider the risks it poses too.


Other News

May 17, 2019Why Is An Episcopal Church Hosting Islamic Anti-Israel BDS Speakers

On Tuesday May 14, Redeemer Episcopal Church in Astoria, Queens hosted an event called "Palestinian Expulsion and Resistance: The Nakba, B...

May 17, 2019Palestinian Children's TV Reinforces All Israel Is Palestine

Having indoctrinated generation after generation of Palestinians through every available media form to reject Israel's existence, it is no...

May 16, 2019Orwellian Attack On Parental Rights-Court Punishes Parent For Misgendering Child

The Supreme Court of British Columbia issued an order that a father may not refer to his 14-year-old daughter as a girl or by her original...

May 16, 2019Globalists Are Bringing Their One World Currency Plans Out Into The Open

Over the past year, the globalists have become absolutely brazen in flaunting their endgame for a single global currency system. There ar...

May 16, 2019With Next Election In Sight Twitter Suspends More Conservatives

The censorship of conservatives and those who buck the status quo is ongoing and increasing in intensity with the 2020 elections on the ho...

May 16, 2019Sheltering Little Aardvarks: PBS Arthur Kids Program Joins LGTB Indoctrination

When I was a kid, my family didn't have cable, so I watched a lot of PBS, which meant I watched a lot of "Arthur," the TV adaptation of Ma...

May 15, 2019We Have 5 Years Before The National Debt "Death Spiral" Point Of No Return

According to the U.S. Treasury Department's Office of Debt Management, the U.S. government is just five years away from the point of no re...

Get Breaking News