December 28, 2011

IS THE ANSWER PERVASIVE DISINFORMATION? Government Total Recall On Past Communications. “UCLA electrical engineering prof John Villaseno thinks the growing capacity of computers to collect, store, and analyze data will enable governments to assess, track, and draw connections between dissidents on a scale previously not seen. . . . As the cost of computer disk storage and other storage media continue to plummet the amount that governments can record goes up. Storage costs have fallen so far that the amount that can be captured about each person and kept long term has gotten pretty detailed. In the future the amount that can be recorded and stored per person will undergo more doublings. Every phone conversation that takes place will be able to be captured and stored for decades. . . . When a government decides someone is of interest as a potential trouble maker that government will be able to quickly analyze every phone conversation (and a large fraction of all online text conversations) that person ever participated in . Then threat assessment software will assess the threat posed by the citizen who is critical of the regime. A retrospective approach is not the only possibility of course. A political threat profile could be maintained that gets continually updated with the latest movements, utterances, and purchasing decisions.”

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