Now Big Brother's even watching us (and our kids) pee!

I don’t recall even Winston Smith (1984) facing this kind of surveillance:

You can imagine my surprise after I paid my 50pence to use the public bathroom, walked in and found myself staring at not just one but three ceiling mounted video surveillance cameras. I had to get real close to their enclosures to convince myself that I wasn’t seeing things. Not only was it really there, but it was a Pan-Tilt-Zoom model with a microphone to top it off… I had absolutely no idea that this was legal anywhere, let alone in downtown London, UK. Sure I knew that London has more cameras per square mile than any other country on the planet, but in bathrooms?!…

According to the London Assembly of Liberal Democrats, London has been outfitted with over 500,000 surveillance cameras. Other put the number much higher at 1.4 million cameras but nobody is telling what the real number is. Another few 10,000 cameras have been installed in taxis and police cars as well. Sounds a bit big brother to me folks, downright scary in fact. Now it gets scarier when you consider that the vast majority of these camera feeds are not sent encrypted across the wire. This makes hacking these video feeds trivial.

Posted by James on Monday, March 29, 2010