back to article DHS reckons US cops' access to sat-surveillance is go

US Homeland Security overlord Michael Chertoff has told reporters that he believes plans for increased use of satellite surveillance by American law-enforcement agencies are ready to move forward. However, Democratic politicians remain unconvinced that adequate privacy and civil liberties safeguards are in place. "I think the …


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  1. Sean Purdy


    "I think the way is now clear to stand NAO up and go warm," said Chertoff.

    I keep forgetting, they stopped speaking English in the US a long time ago.

  2. Matt

    Warm erection......

    as opposed to a cold one? I have to say that in my experience a cold one poses quite a challenge, but perhaps that's my age....

  3. dervheid
    Black Helicopters

    And I thought...

    the movie "Enemy of the State" was just a work of fiction!

    If they're prepared to use this level of technology on their own citizens...

  4. Wayland Sothcott Bronze badge
    Black Helicopters

    re Enemy of the State

    We have a spy helecopter but we need a spy sat.

    The satelittes that they would be using would most probably be low orbit ones whizzing round the whole globe. Unlike geo-stationary they need not focus just on merkins. Expect a similar arrangement to be used in the UK and other countries cooperating with 'Global Warming' to use a euphemism.

  5. Anonymous Coward

    Oh no..

    "plans for warm erection of the NAO"

    Now there is an image I wish I hadn't thought of but can't get out of my mind. Arrrgghhhhh!

  6. dervheid
    Black Helicopters

    @ Wayland

    pretty much what was running through my mind. We're really just beginning to see this shit coming out here in the UK. Unfortunately the majority of Brits seem to be wearing the same blinkers as the majority of Yanks.

    "Anyone who trades liberty for security deserves neither liberty nor security."

    Benjamin Franklin

  7. Dave Bell

    So what can they learn?

    We all know the resolution of Google Earth, and the good stuff is ordinary photo-recce of the sort done in WW2.

    You might be able to tell is a red car was at a particular place when the satellite passed over, or recognise a patch of grass in a field of corn, but what else?

    Want to bet the big reason is the tech that is reputed to be able to monitor mobile phones?

  8. Anonymous Coward

    Using scientific sats to spy on citizens?

    What a crock! Let the coppers use civi sattelites and pay the civi price! Which, AFAIK, they already can.

  9. Anonymous Coward

    More money for the Feds?

    Lets see, if they use the clearance investigations the military users...

    It takes about USD50,000 per investigation (going back 15 years) and taking 6 to 18 months to complete.

    The access lasts 5 years and then you need another investigation.

    I suppose all those police departments will be paying DHS for them.

    Add in some kind of fee system to maintain the satellites and their ground stations.

    That adds up to a bunch of money flowing into DHS!

  10. Wayland Sothcott Bronze badge
    Black Helicopters

    @More money for the Feds

    The new level of cooperation between various authorities be they police and army, government and businesses country to country is quite staggering. They are being let into each others databases, they see each others customers and citizens. If they want someone pulled it happens. The process is still a bit shakey but most of the TV and newsprint media cooperate. The ISPs are slowly falling into line. Tools such as NetNanny are already cooperating. The banks are one the lookout for business activities breaking the £10k threshold, they are not just looking at ten grand cheques but activity that might reach 10k in a year to the same person.

    They are seeking the help of the ordinary nosey parkers; radio advert on XFM "How do you know if somene is just waiting around or is a terrorist? You don't have to know, just call the confidentail terrorist hotline 0800 789321". Seriously!

    We now have to watch out for blond radicalized muslims, we are told that there could be 1500 ordinary brits who have joined Al Quada. Paintball is potentailly terror training, paintball clubs are being vigelant to the potential terrorists in training and will call the terror hotline if they are concerned. An ideal target for the spy sats.

    I don't think anyone is making charges for these anti-terror services. People are only too pleased to chip in to help the war on terror.

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