Eyes All Around: Persistent Surveillance Systems In A City

In the podcast “Eye in the Sky,” a photo of a clustered city is being shown with colorful lines drawn as if they were depicting something. With each of the individually drawn lines beginning from different parts of the city, they all ultimately led to the same spot. This is an image taken by Persistent Surveillance Systems, displaying the city of Juarez, Mexico. With this in mind, each of the lines drawn depict cartel members getting away from a crime scene and heading towards their headquarters. Without their knowledge, these criminals were being surveillanced from the sky, tracking all their activity that had led to the cartel being taken down. Thanks to the pictures provided by the surveillance cameras on the plane, the information was analyzed and then sent to authorities, which helped contribute to the take down of the cartel. Surveillance, in many cases, can be seen as a con, due to the fact that it can be an invasion of privacy.

On the contrary, having surveillance be beneficial because it can be effective tool in criminal related activities, can act as a deterrent for crime, and be used for traffic purposes. To begin with, surveillance technology is able to capture moments in real time which is very useful in solving crime related issues. In some cases, cameras have been used to solve crimes such that involve murder, theft, vandalism, so on and so forth. An example of this would be the photo of Juarez, Mexico provided by PSS. The photo provides useful visuals, such as the neighborhoods, the roads, et cetera. In addition, the distance its taken from is very beneficial. The distance provides a wider view of the city, which doesn’t only seclude it to one area. Furthermore, the lines in the photo help identify the activity and help add more detail to the photo in the way that it allowed the law enforcement to track down certain cartel members and take the action that was needed. This idea is important to my claim because in the end, the surveillance technology proved to be reliable and effective. Another example of surveillance being beneficial would be in helping reduce the activity of crime. Although cameras seem to be controversial due to people feeling that their privacy is being invaded, in most cases, they’re set up in in public areas where everyday life happens. The purpose of these cameras is that they help prevent would be criminals from performing unlawful acts that’ll get them in serious trouble.

Furthermore, they provide a sense of security. Knowing that there is a camera set up in place, a sense of discouragement would come over the individual. An example of this would be if someone were to try and vandalize a building. A security camera would capture the entire event, but if the individual were smart enough, they would not continue trying to perform such action. This idea is important to my claim because it provides examples that occur in everyday life. Lastly, not all surveillance is used for criminal activity, as cameras can also be used for traffic. In today’s society, cameras used for traffic are incredibly useful as streets, and highways tend to be incredibly busy at certain times throughout the day. They help analyze traffic flow in areas where streets tend to be congested. In addition to this, the traffic cameras also help inform drivers of any accidents that might have occured, or they might help commuters find alternate routes if there were any road work that is under progress. But not only are there traffic cameras, as there are also red light cameras.

Although these may not beneficial at times, they’re definitely there to make sure that the law isn’t broken. For example, if someone were to run a red light, the camera would instantly take an image of the car along with its license plate, and would inform law enforcement about the incident and a ticket would later be issued and sent to said cars address. By placing these in areas that are congested and often busy, they not only help with keeping things in control, the cameras help make sure that no accidents occur and that the law is being upholded.

18 May 2020
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