back to article Police create mega crime database to rule them all. Is your numberplate in it? Could be

The police are to consolidate a number of their large databases into a single "platform" in order to "protect victims and spot potential links to other crimes." The plans for a "National Law Enforcement Data Programme" were announced by the Home Office today and will bring together data from the Police National Computer, …

  1. Voland's right hand Silver badge

    Wrong pic

    This one is more appropriate.

    1. TRT Silver badge
  2. wolfetone

    Show Me My Minority Report

    2016.

    The year David Bowie died.

    The year Hans Gruber died.

    The year the rule "innocent until proven guilty" died.

    Liberty, RIP.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Show Me My Minority Report

      Liberty was mortally wounded when Murrica waged an illegal war in the middle east.

      9/11 was liberty's funeral, and we've been living in the post-liberty era for 15 years. Only world war 3 will bring it back.

      1. Fungus Bob Silver badge
        Mushroom

        Re: Show Me My Minority Report

        "Only world war 3 will bring it back."

        The next Supreme Ruler of the USA will either be The Harpy or The Hairpiece so Total Ruin cannot be far behind.

        Icon represents what will happen on Inauguration Day, 2017 :(

    2. TRT Silver badge

      Re: The year the rule "innocent until proven guilty" died.

      That's more like 1996 and again in 2003.

      When policy outweighs principle in the enactment of new legislation, that's an "amber warning" that you've wandered onto the road to "evil law".

    3. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      Re: Show Me My Minority Report

      You forgot to put joke tags around this one.

      Innocent until proven guilty was removed from the UK law code fully around the time when RIPA and HSA were voted for by the Blair-time parliament. So the day for that should be 2000 if not earlier. Not 2016.

      1. Adam 52 Silver badge

        Re: Show Me My Minority Report

        Innocent unless proven guilty has never been a part of English law; it didn't apply to Lady Jane, didn't apply during the Boer War, didn't apply to Oswald Mosely, doesn't apply to holders of a driving licence and doesn't apply to a whole load of suspects, professionals, and other persona non grata today.

    4. This post has been deleted by its author

      1. Rich 11 Silver badge

        Re: Show Me My Minority Report

        Your appearance in court could depend on correct grammar and legal arguments!

        It will certainly depend upon legal arguments. The trick lies, of course, in what the law allows and in how good your lawyers are*.

        *Obviously this no longer applies if the government have removed access to legal aid from you because you have no money and/or fall into a category of society they don't much like.

    5. Christoph Silver badge

      Re: Show Me My Minority Report

      "innocent until proven guilty" implies you're accused of breaking a law.

      Cameron has specifically said that this doesn't apply any more.

      “For too long, we have been a passively tolerant society, saying to our citizens 'as long as you obey the law, we will leave you alone'”

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Peasants! It's all your fault

    members of the public have a responsibility to follow some basic rules to protect ourselves – choosing the more secure products....downloading software updates, particularly on our smartphones....

    Right, so it is my fault that Android has more holes than a colander? And my fault if a carrier branded handset doesn't get updated because either the OEM, or the carrier can't be bothered to incorporate Google's latest half baked efforts to address vulnerabilities?

    .

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Peasants! It's all your fault

      That is the cult of individualism. Everything is your fault.

      Getting spied on? Your fault.

      Mental illness? Your fault.

      No collective bargaining power for wages. Your fault.

      But don't worry, because ALL problems can be solved by buying ... something.

      1. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge

        Re: Peasants! It's all your fault

        On the other boot, if it's all our fault, then we should put it right?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Peasants! It's all your fault

          Sure. I'm willing to bury the hatchet on pointless left/right politics. But there is a lot of self-serving anti-democratic elements in politics that we can't just vote out every 5 years.

          What is an individual to do?

          History being mostly cyclical, what did we do last time?

          1. Version 1.0 Silver badge
            Big Brother

            Re: History being mostly cyclical, what did we do last time?

            You will elect an English version of Trump - the UK is heading in the same direction when politicians of both sides only cater to the rich. The UK is running about one or two election cycles behind the US.

            1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

              Re: History being mostly cyclical, what did we do last time? @Version 1.0

              "You will elect an English version of Trump - the UK is heading in the same direction when politicians of both sides only cater to the rich."

              Whilst it isn't certain that Trump will win the election, I agree with the sentiment. Western politics is going through a very bad time, and the quality of "leaders" is going down continually. I probably won't be around to see it, but revolution is becoming more and more likely by the end of the 21st century.

          2. Kane Silver badge

            Re: Peasants! It's all your fault

            "History being mostly cyclical, what did we do last time?"

            I'm sure axes were involved...

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Peasants! It's all your fault

              "History being mostly cyclical, what did we do last time?"

              I'm sure axes were involved...

              Inciting to violence. Not allowed. But you can demonstrate, if it's gonna make you feel better...

              1. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge
                Black Helicopters

                Re: Peasants! It's all your fault

                I was thinking more along the lines of civil disobedience.

                Trouble is, that kind of thing only works if people are motivated, and most people only seem to be motivated by simple, easy to understand, subjects. (which encryption/privacy/mass surveillance are not)

                If (when?) people do finally wake up and smell the shackles, the internet is a grand tool for organisation. The only thing that would prevent it would be if it had been totally compromised by the vested powers who might conceivable object to such disobedience.

                Oh yeah, it's all for terrorists, right.

                I was always told to never ascribe to malice what can be explained by incompetence. Never did find out what happened to them when they disappeared.

                I am Sparticus and so are you, and you and you etc.

              2. Paul

                Re: Peasants! It's all your fault

                > you can demonstrate, if it's gonna make you feel better

                Not without permission

                https://www.gov.uk/protests-and-marches-letting-the-police-know

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Peasants! It's all your fault

          In the US, the people trying to put it right are called "Bernie bots", and denied coverage in print and television, except as comic relief. AC because I trust, in the toxic political atmosphere, somebody will take out their (now legal anywhere) firearm and.....

    2. Gray
      Flame

      Re: Peasants! It's all your fault

      ...members of the public have a responsibility to follow some basic rules to protect ourselves ... using strong passwords.

      How about: jUstFEckOffYouDizzyarSEdBitchgeTyoUrNosEoutOfMYliFE!

      Or would that be considered "AntiGovernment" and a crime in itself?

      1. muddysteve

        Re: Peasants! It's all your fault

        "How about: jUstFEckOffYouDizzyarSEdBitchgeTyoUrNosEoutOfMYliFE!"

        Sorry - there are no numbers in that password.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Peasants! It's all your fault

      You could always work harder and afford to buy an iPhone.

  4. frank ly

    Responsibility

    "... follow some basic rules to protect ourselves – ..." etc.

    They forgot to mention using strong encryption.

    1. TRT Silver badge

      Re: Responsibility

      I must remember to encrypt my number plate...

    2. Mk4

      Re: Responsibility

      Yes, Dave said there shouldn't be any strong encryption because criminals use it. Or was that cars? Yes, yes, it was cars wasn't it! Yes. So that's cars should not be used because criminals use them. And tin openers. I'm sure criminals use tin openers too.

      1. sysconfig

        Re: Responsibility

        "And tin openers. I'm sure criminals use tin openers too."

        Not the crims that come to mind when talking about surveillance, encryption, terrrrrism etc. They usually eat in 5 star restaurants and get the dinner paid by the common pleb - us tax payers, who are supposed to be grateful that they protect us from whatever it is they think threatens us. (I'd argue that terrorism is a minuscule risk in comparison to truly ciminal pot holes on many British roads, but I'm getting carried away... again..)

        1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

          Re: Responsibility @sysconfig

          Agreed. As has been said by many people here over the last few years, I am far more worried about the government than I am about criminals or terrrists. A criminal or a terrrrist** can make life miserable for a few people, but a government can do it for millions*,**. It is becoming more clear that the government's priorities are not the same as the population's when it comes to security - and why might that be.

          * Unless the criminal is a data-thief.

          ** The two recent well-planned attacks in target-rich environments account for less then 1000 direct casualties, showing how difficult it is to cause mayhem with the tools available.

  5. Gotno iShit Wantno iShit

    Deja vu?

    One of the great things about getting rid of Gordon the Clown was that several databases being implemented to keep the proles in order got the chop. Yet increasingly May is just as bad as the string of Home Secretaries we suffered under Labour. It is becoming increasingly apparent that it matters not one fig what colour ties the residents of Downing Street wear. The real power in this country is elsewhere, constant and answers to no one. We just get to choose the puppets every 5 years.

    1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

      Re: Deja vu?

      MPs come and go, Whitehall remains.

      1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
        Gimp

        MPs come and go, Whitehall remains

        Exactly.

        May or the last (8 ?) previous sock puppets Home Secretaries who've spouted for this stuff know enough IT to think this up for themselves. Let alone implement it.

        Incidentally doesn't the PNDB run on the PNC?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: MPs come and go, Whitehall remains

          And England prevails!

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Deja vu?

        The Senior Civil Service + The Great and the Good, remain. Whitehall otherwise is just another puppet

    2. theModge

      Re: Deja vu? - wrong title

      The title you required was Deja mu: the feeling you've heard this bull before

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Deja vu?

      Yet increasingly May is just as bad as the string of Home Secretaries we suffered under Labour.

      You must realise that she is just trying to emulate Fuhrer Frau Merkel and her East German Stasi friends and make the UK into a police state.

    4. Martin 47

      Re: Deja vu?

      As the old saying goes

      'It doesn't matter who you vote for, the government still gets in'

      Or something like that

  6. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

    "We need to recognise that the crime prevention challenge has evolved – we now need to prevent serious harm that happens inside victims’ homes, or to stop a cyber-criminal on the other side of the world from targeting thousands of people here with a single keystroke."

    Sadly, this will likely do nothing to prevent the most common crime that happens in people's homes - domestic violence. This is one of the most under-reported crimes, and unless you have been a victim (or a perpetrator), you would likely think that it is much less common than it actually is - astoundingly one in twelve women is a victim of some sort of domestic abuse every year (and yes, it does happen to men too).

    What we really need is a cultural change towards acceptance of violence of all sorts in our society, be it the public brawl on the high street on a Friday night, or the more insidious violence that happens behind closed doors, and this is an area where predictive policing could really help. If a woman is in a new relationship with a partner who has a record of violence against other women (a common pattern of domestic violence), it is not beyond the realms of possibility that this link can be identified, and the woman warned.

    I doubt, however, that this programme will help in this way. It'll probably be politically led, looking for the vanishingly small number of terrorists under every stone, whilst ignoring the real crimes that actually affect people's lives every day. It'll be target-led, leading to easy to solve but low impact crimes (like littering,or parking on double-yellows) skewing the system.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Interestingly...

      I was mulling this over the other day. You can tot up a person's role as an "assailant" quite readily, and this happens. But nowhere is it totalled up the person's "role" as a "victim".

      I'm mentioning this because the ex-wife is a serial fruitcake - quite happy to wind people up, picking at their soft-spots which she has an uncanny and instinctive ability to identify and exploit, until they snap and lash out at which point she's straight on the phone to plod who cart off her "assailant".

      The thought arose as I was driving out to the depths of the county where the new custody suite is many miles away from the old one after she had our teenage child arrested for the twentieth time. He apparently angrily grabbed at the coat she'd thrown at him in a fit of temper and the tails had whiplashed out causing the heavy bunch of keys in the pocket to swipe her across the face. Has he ever been arrested for assaulting anyone else? No. Have I ever been arrested for assaulting anyone else? No. Have any of her three boyfriends prior to me that I know of who assaulted her and the two afterwards in a similar position ever been arrested for assaulting anyone else? I've no idea about that one.

      It seems to me that she'll use the police and the criminalisation of someone as a means of acquiring power over a significant male. I wish I'd realised that was how some people operate instead of believing naively that a relationship was a partnership instead of some kind of uneasy cold war balance of power.

      Perhaps richer data will allow more slicing to identify patterns like this. But I expect the police (a) won't have time, (b) be limited by policy and (c) don't give a f***.

    2. Charles 9 Silver badge

      "What we really need is a cultural change towards acceptance of violence of all sorts in our society, be it the public brawl on the high street on a Friday night, or the more insidious violence that happens behind closed doors, and this is an area where predictive policing could really help."

      I doubt it'll work. Violence is damn near instinctive, probably even biological. That's why it feels so damn GOOD to vent steam, to shoot guns at nothing in particular, to unload on a punching bag, and so on. I would say getting rid of violence is going to be a tall order when our bodies are against us in that regard.

      1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

        Violence is damn near instinctive, probably even biological.

        This is true, but there is a clear distinction between cultural tolerance of violence, and it being culturally unacceptable.

        After all, in many cultures, adult men are still marrying child brides, but our culture doesn't accept this.

        Most people are able to overcome the 'natural instincts' to go around trying to have sex with anything that moves, defecate wherever they like, and grab hold of anything that takes their fancy. Violence against each other can go the same way, without too much difficulty, as far as I am concerned. Those who really cannot keep themselves form lashing out should really be locked away, either in prison, or in a psychiatric institution, depending on whether a judge deems them 'mad or bad'.

        1. Charles 9 Silver badge

          "Most people are able to overcome the 'natural instincts' to go around trying to have sex with anything that moves, defecate wherever they like, and grab hold of anything that takes their fancy."

          We're NOT "overcoming" them. We're merely repressing them. Thing is, it builds up like water behind a dam, and the dam doesn't have very solid foundations. Or perhaps a better analogy, a forest that keeps getting tinder built up. Sooner or later, the dam's going to break down or the forest is going to flash into a blaze. Why do you think we see so much scandal these days? We LIKE to think we're creatures who can control our emotions, but when crisis hits, what do we turn to? Not the brain, the gut, and like I said we do it practically on a reflex, without even thinking so we don't even have time to consider our actions until it's too damn late.

    3. Pedigree-Pete
      Big Brother

      Cameras..

      we just need cameras in every room in every home to protect our fellow citizens.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Devil

        Re: Cameras..

        The Machine agrees

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Psychic?

      @"This is one of the most under-reported crimes, "

      @"astoundingly one in twelve women is a victim of some sort of domestic abuse every year"

      Unreported, yet you claim to know the true number. By magic? Or just made up to support an agenda. I think its the latter.

      If you're spouse beats you up you can report it to the police, if the police beat you up, well tough.

      As to whether the spouse should take minor violence as a police matter, isn't that a matter for the spouse? Their judgement call not yours? I have a few scars from my wife, and I view that as par for the course. My judgement is the correct one, not yours. I make the choice individually based on the person, not Google or Magic 8 ball data mining.

      @"I doubt, however, that this programme will help in this way. It'll probably be politically led, looking for the vanishingly small number of terrorists under every stone,"

      Are you suggesting that the police be watching inside people's homes? Seriously, you might want to read up on why the West Midlands Serious Crime Squad was disbanded (lots of dead bodies, not a single police prosecuted). If domestic violence is such a big problem in your mind, yet is such a small problem it goes unreported, perhaps the problem is in your mind?

      1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

        Re: Psychic?

        Unreported, yet you claim to know the true number. By magic? Or just made up to support an agenda. I think its the latter.

        Based, on facts, if you'd bothered to check for yourself.

        http://www.lwa.org.uk/understanding-abuse/statistics.htm

        "on average there will have been 35 assaults before a victim calls the police" - so yes, vastly under-reported.

        What I am suggesting is letting people know if their partner has a history of violent crime (something that in some circumstances they can already check for themselves, but I believe it needs to be more proactive).

        As for the police beating people up, do you have any sources for that, or did you invent it to suit an agenda? It might have been a historical problem, but these days, with CCTV in police stations, and almost everything being referred to the IPCC, I think you'll find that it's a very small problem, compared to domestic violence.

        My partner happens to work with victims of crime, a large number of whom are victims of domestic abuse, so I happen to have some inkling of what I'm talking about. Unlike you, it seems.

        1. nsld
          Facepalm

          Re: Psychic?

          Ah the infamous 2 women a week stat made up by a pr DROID at wimmins aid. A figure so imaginary that even the cps stopped using it.

          And that's before you look at the incredible level of false reports of DV in child contact proceedings as a contact blocking strategy.

          Much like false rape allegations the real victims end up doubly victimised by those making false allegations.

          A database of violent partners is a good idea, as is a database of those who make false allegations. Some prosecutions of them would be welcome as well but the man hating femonazis have an issue with that.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Psychic?

          @"Based, on facts,"

          A PR report from a domestic abuse charity is PR, not fact.

          You are seeking to claim crimes for which the claimed victim does not claim as a crime. The victim knows better than you, they were actually there. You are classic nanny state, fixing non crimes from your own imagination.

          @"As for the police beating people up, do you have any sources for that, or did you invent it to suit an agenda? "

          Let me ask you a simple thing. If 1 in 12 people are domestically violent as you claim, why would 1 in 12 police not be domestically violent? i.e. what makes the men in uniform special? Wouldn't stronger men use to applying violence be more prone to using violence?

          Now go back and read about why the West Midlands Serious Crime Squad was disbanded, basically murders during torture, covered with falsification of evidence.

          They're not special, there are good and bad, violent, calm, psycho, balanced among them. The SYSTEM of checks and balances is what gives us the stability we have, not some sort of magic goodness in the officers themselves.

          This article says the police want a giant fishing database. i.e. an end to the privacy right, and no checks and balances and removal of judicial process, and the right to challenge. How would we protect the people from mafia police? You couldn't even run to the press in a world where journalists are the most watched!

        3. Roj Blake Silver badge

          Re: Psychic?

          "It might have been a historical problem, but these days, with CCTV in police stations"

          It's unfortunate that the CCTV systems used by the police are notoriously unreliable.

        4. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

          Re: Psychic? @Loyal Commenter

          I have to say that I have never read anything so frightening on these pages as what you are suggesting. You really need to get a sense of perspective, regardless of what your partner does for a living.

          1. TRT Silver badge

            Re: "Most people overcome 'natural instincts' to have sex with anything that moves

            My pearl of wisdom for anyone who'll listen is "Don't put it in crazy." with a corollary for females, "Don't let crazy put it in you."

          2. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

            Re: Psychic? @Loyal Commenter

            I have to say that I have never read anything so frightening on these pages as what you are suggesting. You really need to get a sense of perspective, regardless of what your partner does for a living.

            Yes, it is frightening isn't it? The fact that we like to think ourselves civilised but behind closed doors people are kicking seven shades of shit out of each other on a daily basis. The scary thing is that because most people don't see it, they don't know it goes on, and everyone assumes that others are like themselves (i.e. not drunken violent arseholes). The actual number of perpetrators of domestic violence is actually relatively low - not all men are women beaters by a long way, but the ones who are make up for it in a big way. A man who beats one woman will more often than not be a serial abuser, and may have served time in prison for such offences. His next partner won't know this, and often such abusers start off as charmers, before abusing their victims. A lot of women are reluctant to report such crimes because of the complex relationship involved with someone you are in love with hitting you. Excuses will be made, such as "he didn't mean it", "it was my fault", etc. etc. Abusers will psychologically manipulate their victims ('gaslighting') into believing that they are at fault, and not the abuser. In cases where a crime is actually reported to the police, on average, it will be on the 35th occasion of abuse. On average. That means that the crimes are under-reported by a staggering 35 times.

            This is absolutely not about PR from charities; there are heaps of statistics gathered on such crimes, as they are serious and widespread. The one I quoted was the first result I got when googling it. if you want to be sure for yourself, feel free to pick through the statistics held by the ONS, unless you want to claim that these are somehow misleading because they are gathered by the government, who have an agenda? My personal 'agenda' here is perfectly clear - I think that people who beat each other are criminals and should be punished for their actions. I think this 'agenda' is one that is shared by most reasonable people. That people think there is some other agenda at play simply shows the staggering nature of the problem, and how well hidden it is in society simply because it happens behind closed doors.

            In terms of a 'sense of perspective', my partner has, variously, worked for a crime victim's charity, the Ministry of Justice, and as police staff, and holds a masters degree in criminology. She has never actually worked for a domestic abuse charity, but so much of the work that comes through her door has to do with domestic violence, and I get to hear about it, that I have a pretty good perspective on the problem. Putting your fingers in your ears and pretending it doesn't happen is the exact opposite of this.

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "If a woman is in a new relationship with a partner who has a record of violence against other women [..]"

      Unfortunately I suspect Stockholm Syndrome comes into effect. I have known otherwise intelligent women who regularly preferred men as partners who were then violent towards them. In one case there was definitely a history of similar family violence in their childhood. It almost as if there is some atavistic trait that gives some truth to the idea that some women are hard-wired to want "strong" men.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So if I have a relative living a medium distance from me and near a drug dealer then how long will it be before the police raid my house at 6am?

    Data on it's own won't solve problems, when will these politicians realise that?

    2016 - Year of the joined up datasets.

    2017 - Year of the massive mistakes and miscarriages of justice.

    After that who knows what is planned for us Citizens but it's not good.

    On a side note in today's statement by Theresa May she brought up the IPB in relation to Brussels to the cries of Hear Hear, that alone is ridiculous but then Andy Burnham stated Labour supports everything she said.

    1. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge
      Black Helicopters

      We already know what's planned

      "After that who knows what is planned for us Citizens but it's not good."

      A boot, stamping on our face, forever.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: We already know what's planned

        I love Orwell, but there are some crazy plot devices in 1984 to create the "End of history" political scenario featured in the book. In reality nothing is stable forever.

        See Adam Curtis' "All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace - Part 2 - The Use and Abuse of Vegetational Concepts".

    2. Jimmy2Cows Silver badge

      Some opposition huh?

      In response to her despicable use of a heinous crime to bolster IPB support, May should have been forced to explain exactly how the IPB would have prevented these attacks where, as usual, security services already knew the bombers as they'd done hard time for previous violent offences.

      People with a such known violent past and links to radical points of view should already be surveillance targets. Sufficient threat already to warrant it. No need to multiply the haystack exponentially when you already have the needles.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      There is no such thing as a miscarriage of justice

      "Ошибки правосудия не существуют. Наши социалистические суды всегда правы" - There is no such thing as a miscarriage of justice. Our socialist justice system is always right.

      "Презумпция невиновности это отрыжка буржуазии" - roughly translates as Presumption of Innocence is the regurgitation of bourgeoisie.

      Joseph, Vissarionovich Jugashvilli. Circa 1937. I believe from one of the speeches given to the personnel of the NKVD and judicial system.

      It is a pity, todays cheerleaders for this have forgotten the rest. Half of the people in the hall listening to the original in 1937 ended up as: "прошел он коридорчиком и кончил стенкой кажется" - "Walked down the hall and ended against the wall"

      Next time you think about presumption of innocence, make sure you listen to the giggles coming from the cemetery next to the Kremlin wall. Half of the graves are showing movement signs and roaring laughter coming from under them.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      If Datamining worked

      If data mining worked, then data mining companies would be making a fortune betting on horses and football pools, and stock markets.

      So tell me again how their databases will select criminals before they commit crime. Yet can't make you a fortune in other easier data mining cases.

      Also how exactly do you plan to comply with the right to privacy and right to judicial process. You know these are defined in law right? A legal requirement right?

      1. Charles 9 Silver badge

        Re: If Datamining worked

        Well, since sports betting adjusts to the bets being made before the event, Diminishing Returns eventually kicks in.

        As for the stock market, since unpredictable humans and insider hijinks are involved, the data set will always be inadequate to make a truly accurate prediction.

        1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

          Re: If Datamining worked

          "As for the stock market, since unpredictable humans and insider hijinks are involved, the data set will always be inadequate to make a truly accurate prediction."

          Surely these factors apply equally to crime prediction, so the result will be equally inaccurate. My first thought when I read the article was "Get access to the data and then plan an unpredicted crime".

  8. theModge

    Brought foward the day after an attack it wouldn't have prevented

    The lack of subtly bringing this up the day after yet another terror attack it wouldn't have prevented is outstanding. Not only would this be very limited use in Brussels (the city has excellent public transport) but they are still taking advantage of the climate of fear it produced. Managing both not to help and being put forward as a solution. Brilliant.

  9. Floydian Slip
    Black Helicopters

    ANPR, CCTV and the death of privacy

    I remember when ANPR cameras were introduced with the promise that they would make live comparisons of MOT and insurance databases and ONLY keep data for vehicles breaking the law.

    I realised that this was a broken promise when a grandfather from Trowbridge got himself lost 'twixt a London airport and home and the ANPR database was able to find his car by searching the database.

    When ANPR cameras sprung up on poles around my town I asked my local council-person who was responsible - based on the fact that if you or I put up CCTV cameras we have to post a Data Controller Notice with contact details and the ANPR poles were without ID

    Not us said the council-person who suggested I contacted my MP. Not us said the MP who contacted the local chief constable - who effectively said "F off, it's none of your business"

    I don't like the "if you've done nothing wrong then you've got nothing to hide" - it's none of the Government's business what I'm doing PROVIDED I'm not breaking the law (presumed innocence)

    However, it's all gone to pop, we're now "the safest country on the planet" due to the sheer amount of surveillance we're now under.

    Where will it end - cameras watching us in our homes and cars? Is that why cars are being made with WiFi hotspots these days?

    1. FreeBrad

      Re: ANPR, CCTV and the death of privacy

      In a word Yes! If we stay in the European Union (Which hopefully we will not) then an intrusive device called e-Call will be mandated from 2018 in all new cars. To start off with it will call the police in the event of an accident but with a little function creep, it will not be long before it records moving traffic so-called "Offences".

      Will be handy in a few years time though when a few have been scrapped then they can be set off all over the place to lead the police on a wild goose chase while the crims make their getaway.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It's a splendid idea...it'll increase productivity for hackers by an order of magnitude as there'll only be the one system they need to hack now. Why not go the whole fucking way and include NHS records and people's surfing history while they're about it?

    Teresa May being involved in a stupid fucking scheme against the best interests of the population; who'd a thunk it?

    It also noted that members of the public have a responsibility to follow some basic rules to protect ourselves – choosing the more secure products, installing security software on all our devices, downloading software updates, particularly on our smartphones, and using strong passwords.

    Hang on; weren't they trying to stop us having any security at all last week? I fucking despair...

  11. scrubber

    It's not enough

    We should also have face recognition cameras everywhere so we know who's where in public. And infrared cameras too so we can see what people are up to indoors, lest they be doing something illegal, and we need to have a way to listen in lest they be plotting.

    C'mon, we all know all people are up to no good and the fine upstanding plod need every assistance going to catch the filthy law breaking scum who make up the 'public'.

    This has been a public service announcement for the BBC. It all started with their scanners.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: It's not enough

      Come the revolution it will be the plod against the wall, I know it allways will be in a proper revolution but this time it will indeed be their own fault.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: It's not enough

        "Come the revolution it will be the plod against the wall..."

        How when it's the plods who have the big guns and, in the end, it's the military with the nukes?

  12. Tubz

    Police I.T rule book,

    1. Create massive database

    2. Collect data any anything that may be of interest

    3. Ensure that it is unsecure and accessible by anybody willing to pay a £ or $

    4. Don't worry if it's illegal, we'll get the laws changed later to get an exemption

    5. If found out, ignore any laws that says we must delete data

    6. If we have to anonymise the data, hack the database, so it looks like we are and then we don't have too.

  13. PaulAb

    Laughing Policeman RIP

    22 billion transiting vehicles watched by our galant boys in blue, who wants to lay bets on how many decimal places we need to find a criminal act.

    I understand the police perspective though, it's crime ridden out there, lets stay in and watch number plates.

    OOOH, Ho, Ho, Ho, Ho, HO,HO, Ho, ho, AAAAH, HA, HA, HA, Ha, ha, ha, HEEE, EH, EH, EH, EH,........

    First verse of the policemans anthem

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    called into question by the Surveillance Camera Commissioner

    I'd love to have this job! I'd be calling into question all day long...

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Re: called into question by the Surveillance Camera Commissioner

      It'd be pretty boring. The Biometrics Comissioner's not got very far either.

  15. bonkers

    3 points

    1) these databases get either hacked, or worse, sold.

    Look at the oopsy-daisy wherein our NHS records in their entirety were passed to a trusted partner, unencrypted, on a USB stick. Parliament committee scolded the relevant tossers, but you can't get the shit back into the donkey.

    Look also at the sale of DVLC records of your choice at £2.50 a pop - targeting posh car marques and fining them £100, mostly they just got the secretary to pay up. This was private data you were/are compelled to hand over.

    2) cost of prosecution is our only defence against unworthy law

    With costs involved, only the most serious laws get enforced, look at speeding for one instance, it used to be an occasional thing requiring active pursuit for 2/3 of a mile with lights flashing. Now it is easy to leave it permanently switched on. - Don't give me the "idiot tax" arguments, it is a minor transgression in most instances and not a great safety concern, statistically. Besides, first they came for the speeders..

    Look at poll tax non-payment for another example, kangaroo courts prosecuting non-payers at 20 per hour. This made any legitimate rebellion, if there is such a thing in today's newspeak, impossible.

    3) Finally, I would like the opportunity, as a responsible citizen, providing I do no intentional harm to others, the right to do whatever the fuck i like in private, with consenting adults of my choice. This may include unwise or immoral or simply depraved activities, not least of which might be the consumption of illicit substances.

    How long before our self-appointed moral guardians work out that the casual drugs distribution chain shows up easily in this data, and can therefore be halted at very little cost?

    For god's sake, we're human and have been doing this sort of thing since before the stone age.

    Unlike the chinless cousin-fucking aliens that run our country.

    1. Charles 9 Silver badge

      Re: 3 points

      "Finally, I would like the opportunity, as a responsible citizen, providing I do no intentional harm to others, the right to do whatever the fuck i like in private, with consenting adults of my choice. This may include unwise or immoral or simply depraved activities, not least of which might be the consumption of illicit substances."

      Problem is, doing UNINTENTIONAL harm to others is STILL a crime: negligence, and things you do in private can have knock-on effects in public, such as getting too drunk to work, leaving your boss understaffed on the day of a surprise inspection, and so on. So no, you cannot do whatever the F you like in private because no man lives in complete isolation.

      1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

        Re: 3 points @Charles 9

        Sorry, you are wrong. Only in extreme circumstances is negligence a crime - Gross Negligence Manslaughter, for instance*. Crime is defined by the answer to the question "can the State imprison or fine you for it?". If yes, it is a crime. If no, then it is either a civil matter or nothing punishable at all. Simply having knock-on effects in public doesn't make the initial action a crime.

        *Of course, you might be thinking of recklessness, but the rule on this is very tightly proscribed, at least in the UK - it requires a subjective test: successful prosecution requires that the prosecution proves i) that the accused was aware of a risk that it exists or will exist; and ii) that it is unreasonable to take the risk." This is quite a difficult hurdle to get over.

        1. Charles 9 Silver badge

          Re: 3 points @Charles 9

          "Simply having knock-on effects in public doesn't make the initial action a crime."

          Yes it does. It's called, "Thinking It Through," which I don't see very much of these days. If you're getting drunk the night before you're supposed to go to work (meaning you KNOW you're supposed to be sober the next day), then that's willful disregard, and that's at least grounds for court action if consequences result. Okay, it may not necessarily be a crime (but if could, say if someone dies or is permanently maimed as a result), but negligence has a lower bar in the civil courts, and civil judgments are themselves both a punishment and compensation for wronging someone else.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Already exists illegally

    This mega database ALREADY EXISTS. The Snoopers Charter debates brought this to peoples attention, and now she feels the need to try to legalize it. It was revealed last year (link below). It has no legal basis, and pisses all over the privacy right and database laws. Hence she's now trying to retro-fit UK law to make it legal.

    What they did was seized data within the law (mostly RIPA the joke of a law), stick it into a big database. Then when they want to go fishing they don't follow the legal process with its checks and balances and instead search their own private copy.

    Snoopers Charter, in theory it is a filter on Internet data to investigate crime. In reality it is a data-feed into this database. The filters are broad (unspecified) and intended to populate this database. The police search their local copy, free from judicial process, and oversight, and any consequences for misuse.

    Due process? Nope. Right to judicial process? Nope. Right to privacy? No, there are watchers and watched. The watchers control the watched, but in turn have zero oversight over them.

    Right to democracy? Nope, because the voter was kept out of this, they voted in Cameron and May without knowing what they knew.

    Of course all that's going to happen is mafia police.

    At this point, nobody in Parliament can list WHO gets WHAT data from WHERE under what LAW. Because they're not following the laws. They're doing whatever they want, and their bad-actors in Government (which their surveillance helps put in place) then try to make legal whatever they're doing.

    I bet May's Government can't list the data-feeds either. I bet you couldn't get Theresa May under oath to Parliament to enumerate even a fraction of the list. Parliament can pass all the laws, and courts can interpret those laws, but this lawlessness of Police and GCHQ means thats meaningless chatter.

    ---------------------

    https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20150312/09283830302/report-says-uk-citizens-must-give-up-right-to-privacy-because-terrorism-reveals-huge-secret-government-databases.shtml

    "The Agencies use Bulk Personal Datasets -- large databases containing personal information about a wide range of people -- to identify individuals in the course of investigations, to establish links, and as a means of verifying information obtained through other sources. These datasets are an increasingly important investigative tool for the Agencies....

    "Until the publication of this Report, the capability was not publicly acknowledged, and there had been no public or Parliamentary consideration of the related privacy considerations and safeguards.

    "The legislation does not set out any restrictions on the acquisition, storage, retention, sharing and destruction of Bulk Personal Datasets, and no legal penalties exist for misuse of this information.

    "Access to the datasets -- which may include significant quantities of personal information about British citizens -- is authorised internally within the Agencies without Ministerial approval."

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Planning permission? The Gov'ner of Britains' Open Prison just got a bigger footprint/extension.

    So if we'd had this technology 25 years ago and we could go back and instantly access past public HD video surveillance, would DC's said exploits of Fcuking a Dead Pig's head change anything or would it be pushed under the carpet?

    The problem will all this surveillance is 'you and I' don't control what becomes public knowledge, what triggers some action (or doesn't) so you are no safer than you would be without it, probably less so. 'Nothing to hide, nothing to fear' is naive.

    Sometimes disasters change the narrative (human nature), that's far too persuasive, even with 'blanket surveillance' to ignore, hence they will always happen.

    Sometimes that will be from selectively ignoring things (as above) to change that narrative. Its also self perpetuating, 'better intelligence' pinpointing the optimum time to change the narrative - so, manipulated situations to change the narrative become far easier to construct.

  18. A Ghost
    FAIL

    Have the Police gone totally insane?

    I do believe they have.

    So, they aren't interested in people that actually have committed crimes and arresting them and bringing them to justice, but they are interested in people that 'might' commit a crime.

    That is a definition of insanity. It not only makes the whole Police thing unfit for purpose, it makes it a liability. They are admitting that they are not interested in concrete reality, but in a possible fairy tail might/might not happen world. They are in cloud cuckoo land and they think it is alright? They have taken leave of their senses.

    There are many many cases of people who have had crimes committed against them, and the perpetrator is known, witnesses present willing to testify, the addresses of the perps known, and the police turn around and say 'there's nothing we can do - go away and don't come back'. Even though laws have been broken and crimes committed. I'm not even talking 'possession is nine tenths of the law' stuff. I'm talking clear cut black and white cases. I speak from experience, as do many others on this subject.

    But, they are spending our tax money on spying on people just in case they might commit a crime?

    Truly, madly, deeply fucking bat shit crazy.

    They are so deep into the paranoia now that I fear they may lose control and start doing some real damage.

    We all live by the rule of law. Be that the law of the jungle, the law of the land or just the general social contract that exists. The police are transgressing that and becoming the aggressors with this. But we all knew it was coming. And we all know they can't be stopped.

    They are out of control and worse than that, criminally insane. And they are supposed to protect us?

    They are hunting us, and we are the hunted. Remember that. In the eyes of the law in 2016, everyone is guilty! They might not have committed the crime yet, but they will. And if they don't we'll pass a law that makes sure they have committed a crime - like getting out of bed in the morning - then we'll get 'em.

    No one will be innocent. Everyone will be a target. No one will have any privacy. Everyone will have blackmail material to be held against them on file to be used at a later date should 'someone look at me funny, Sarj'.

    My forefathers who fought in two world wars, some even giving their life at the age of 25, would be disgusted what this country has turned into: A prison complex without locked doors, with the prisoners so well behaved that they don't even try to escape, because they don't even realise they are imprisoned. Yet say the wrong thing on social media and be mobbed by holier than thou fucking do-gooders and virtue signallers, foaming at the mouth, seeking 'justice'. Chumps.

    What a total fucking joke this country has become. Then again, we do lead the way in all of this shit...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Have the Police gone totally insane?

      "[..] but they are interested in people that 'might' commit a crime."

      Innocent people are so much easier for the statistics. They aren't expecting problems with the police so they don't look over their home and possessions wondering how they could be interpreted by a jaundiced eye. They know nothing about legal process and their legal rights. They will too often accept a caution. Either because the police convince them they have broken some law in some obscure way - or to avoid the stigma of the local press. Front page news for arrests - buried inside for "no charge" or verdicts of "innocent".

  19. J. R. Hartley

    Check if your car is on our database...

    ... by entering your reg, name, home address and telephone number in the form below.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Check if your car is on our database...

      Also shoe size; all your pseudonyms and a photo of your grundle.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Check if your car is on our database...

      Which isn't so different from...

      Going on holiday, need a hire car?, you'll need to give the rental company "shared" access to your Driving Licence Points System, just add your NI Number in this DVLA form below, to "validate" who you are.

      Under law, we (DVLA) have no access and can't link to your NI Number directly, but any information you give us voluntarily - we can, oh - and we'll keep indefinitely. (if you're not happy with this - you could always not share your NI Number, not hire a car abroad)*

      *which are pretty much the terms of using the DVLA Driving Licence Points System.

  20. FreeBrad

    Pentip

    The police have a database called pentip that records vehicle related so-called "Offences" and the responses to things such as S.172 notices for example. If you nominate a driver that cannot be traced then this is recorded; if you do it several times then the police think that they have some sort of right to investigate you. The funniest thing is when they try and take them to court and you put them to proof; they can have all the data that they like, but if they have no proof that the actual offence that they are charging you with has been committed by you then there is nothing that they can do about it other than try and scare you.

    The simple way to defeat these intrusive databases is to put the police and the Crown to proof on every aspect. It costs them a fortune and they normally cannot do it.

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