Government Technology

Maryland to Create Statewide Database for License Plate Readers



Suffolk County, Va.
Car-mounted license plate readers

August 5, 2010 By

Maryland will become the first state in the country to create a statewide network for data collected from license plate readers, Gov. Martin O'Malley announced Wednesday, Aug. 4.

An existing network that makes that data available to state law enforcement agencies will be expanded to include Maryland's localities. The single database will be housed in the state's fusion center, and the state's license plate readers "will be networked to ensure seamless coordination and consistent information sharing during critical incidents," according to the state.

In the past three-plus years, Maryland has made $2 million available to law enforcement to deploy 105 license plate recognition units around the state, according to the governor's office. As part of Tuesday's announcement, in the next 12 months Maryland will add 100 more license plate readers, paid for by a combination of the federal Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant, federal homeland security funding and the Maryland Department of Transportation.

"Protecting the public's safety is among our most solemn obligations as public servants. Using this technology to dramatically reduce vehicle thefts keeps our neighborhoods safe and enhances the quality of life for every Marylander," O'Malley said in a statement.

Officials in charge of the expanded license plate network were unavailable for comment Wednesday.

Thousands of police departments in the U.S. have at least one license plate reader. The cameras typically are mounted in police patrol cars or at fixed locations, such as bridge toll booths. Law enforcement agencies use them to detect scofflaws who don't pay tolls or parking ticket violators, or to find stolen cars and vehicles of parole violators. As the camera scans the license plate, the data is cross-referenced in real time with crime and traffic violation databases.

Some privacy advocates have complained the technology is unnecessarily intrusive and can in some cases be an invasion of privacy. Maryland said citizens' rights will be protected in a manner that's consistent with other public safety policies.

 


| More

Comments

Add Your Comment

You are solely responsible for the content of your comments. We reserve the right to remove comments that are considered profane, vulgar, obscene, factually inaccurate, off-topic, or considered a personal attack.

In Our Library

White Papers | Exclusives Reports | Webinar Archives | Best Practices and Case Studies
Maintain Your IT Budget with Consistent Compliance Practices
Between the demands of meeting federal IT compliance mandates, increasing cybersecurity threats, and ever-shrinking budgets, it’s not uncommon for routine maintenance tasks to slip among state and local government IT departments. If it’s been months, or even only days, since you have maintained your systems, your agency may not be prepared for a compliance audit—and that could have severe financial consequences. Regardless of your mission, consistent systems keep your data secure, your age
Best Practice Guide for Cloud and As-A-Service Procurements
While technology service options for government continue to evolve, procurement processes and policies have remained firmly rooted in practices that are no longer effective. This guide, built upon the collaborative work of state and local government and industry executives, outlines and explains the changes needed for more flexible and agile procurement processes.
Fresh Ideas In Online Security for Public Safety Organizations
Lesley Carhart, Senior Information Security Specialist at Motorola Solutions, knows that online and computer security are more challenging than ever. Personal smartphones, removable devices like USB storage drives, and social media have a significant impact on security. In “Fresh Ideas in Online Security for Public Safely Organizations,” Lesley provides recommendations to improve your online security against threats from social networks, removable devices, weak passwords and digital photos.
View All

Featured Papers