political

Walking: it’s time to take action on this major terrorist threat

This could be a terrorist on their way to kill you

With apologies to Theresa May and The Sun.

Walking is now a part of our daily lives — it’s how we go to the travel agents to book our holidays, buy our Christmas presents and meet our friends.

But walking can also be abused by criminals, paedophiles and terrorists who want to cover their tracks and keep their communication secret.

Right now, the police and security agencies use information from watching people walking around to solve crime and keep us safe.

Looking at where a suspect has walked up to can lead the police to other criminals. Whole paedophile rings, criminal conspiracies and terrorist plots can then be smashed.

Such data has been used in every security service terrorism investigation and serious organised crime investigations since the police force was first created.

We cannot afford to lose this vital law enforcement tool. But currently not all walking by criminals can always be tracked.

That’s why the Government is proposing to help the police stay one step ahead of the criminals.

There are no plans for any big Government database of perambulations. No one is going to be looking through ordinary people’s walking, jogging or running habits.

We are simply asking shoe manufacturers to include an RFID tracking chip in every pair of shoes they sell.

Only suspected terrorists, paedophiles or serious criminals will be investigated.

As Home Secretary I have a responsibility to keep the British public safe. That is exactly what I intend to do.

 

For the serious stuff, see my other posts on the topic.

13 comments
Jock Coats
Jock Coats

'sides - surely any fule knoes that terrorists grow their own shoes! :)

Jock Coats
Jock Coats

Why bother with RFID chips? Gait recognition and facial recognition, along with ANPR for vehicles are getting us there anyway. There's even a city in Mexico who is adopting some US made iris recognition technology that can detect who you are even if you are running past the detector which will have this technology all over the city in the next few years. They are, of course, describing it as the "safest city" on the planet. Likely coming to a town near you soon!

Daniel Henry
Daniel Henry

Was this all written around the "one step ahead" pun? :p

Ewan Matheson
Ewan Matheson

No article I have read has really gotten to the real core of why these measures are draconian to the same degree as this article. Well done sir.

Grev Williams
Grev Williams

Splendid piece... However, I must take issue with "With apologies to Theresa May." as I feel it is the clown-mistress general who owes US the apology, not the other way around.

Ian Sheppard
Ian Sheppard

Eating is bad, and haircuts and OMG - turn the bath taps on FULL before I say anymore...

Nigel Heffernan
Nigel Heffernan

The single most glaring technical non-sequitur in this article is cost, closely-followed by technical feasibility. Unlike pervasive email interception, this would only cost a few tens of millions, assuming kerbside readers can be installed for less than £100 each; and the data volume is entirely manageable. Feasibility and controllable costs are unknown in national IT projects. Worse, the ability to set a ceiling on costs reduces the fees that will inevitably be paid to well-connected management consultancies; worse, the presence of a clear technical 'deliverable' would force them to actually deliver a product and a service, rather than unending series of cost overruns to no purpose other than packing corporate hospitality events with junior ministers. So your whole idea is utterly impossible. Laughable, even.

Sarah Barlow
Sarah Barlow

Excellent ,brilliant link Daniel Henry, and I usually think Mark Pack is a wusser :)

Nigel Heffernan
Nigel Heffernan

What you do instead is run your own reader in a railway station for a day, clone all the tags you read, and scatter copies on the pavement, sticky-side up. Your own tag is, by pure chance, one of the ones copied.

Neil Shipp
Neil Shipp

Easily defeated by microwaving them before use.

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