Tech Digest roundup: British police ‘shot through’ with Chinese surveillance cameras, watchdog warns
9 in 10 support use of safety cameras, claims road charity
Police’s facial recognition technology only accurate three quarters of the time
Living in the smart city – solar powered pavements and roads that can charge electric cars
How To: Use your iPhone to control your home
One device to rule them all, Jetsons-style.
Amazon blocks Phorm from scanning its website
Controversial ad-targeting system Phorm will be blocked from scanning Amazon’s website, according to a statement released by the company this afternoon. It’s not alone – LiveJournal, mySociety and Netmums will also be off-limits.
The system, which works by scanning for keywords on pages visited by a user and using that to send more relevant adverts, has been under fire this week, after the European Union declared that it would be bringing legal action against the UK for its data protection laws not preventing such a system.
The Open Rights Group, which works to protect digital rights and freedoms, has written to the privacy officers of Microsoft, Google, Yahoo, Facebook, AOL, Bebo, Yahoo, Amazon and eBay, asking them to block Phorm. So far, Amazon is the only company in that list to respond, but if the others start following suit then Phorm could be in even greater trouble.
Abeltech DPA-702 wireless security system – the MI6 of photoframes
Whether you want to use it as a baby monitor, for home security or just to spy on your housemates, the Abeltech DPA-702 wireless surveillance system looks like a lot of fun or at least a good way to make digital photoframes a hell of a lot more interesting.
The camera itself is not the highest of quality shooting 15fps at 480 x 240 or 24fps at 320 x 240 but then it’s probably best not to clog the 2.4GHz wireless transmitter…
Airstrip One Police to get mobile fingerprint scanners
Orwell began spinning in his grave at an even faster rate today after it was announced by the government that the police are to be given mobile fingerprint scanners, which will allow them to scan prints at the scene and immediately compare them to the national “Ident1” database.
Mobile phones about to become electronic tags – a passport might be required to buy one
If you’re one of those people who likes to get angry about possible privacy invasions, this should get you nicely red-faced until well after lunchtime.
As part of the vague, all-encompassing crackdown on anything to do with “terrorism,” the government is considering adding mobile phones to its national database of who owns what – so you could be asked to hand over your passport in exchange for buying a cheap pay-as-you-go job…
Car Camera Voyager Pro captures timeless memories of obnoxious driving
Due to the absurd cost of motor insurance, my parents never let me take either of their cars out for a spin when I younger – probably for fear that I might take ‘spin’ a little too literally. If they had however, I bet they would have wanted one of these on board.