SunflexZone Anti-ALPR Privacy Solutions
Welcome to SunflexZone. We design and manufacture a small selection of products with the motorist, and motorcyclist, in mind. Recently there has been a kind of "war on driving." Our products allow you to send a clear message saying this is not OK and we will fight back.
Possibly the most intrusive, system being used more and more is a device called Automatic License Plate Recognition / reader (ALPR) or Automatic Name Plate Recognition / reader (ANPR)(general terminology used by the agencies and manufacturers would be License Plate Readers or LPR). Mounted on police/government vehicles, overpasses and intersections, this device infringes on your privacy by recording into a datebase your geolocation along with other information including wide angle color photographs, every time your vehicle is spotted. Even private companies are using it to collect data now. We design products that effectively render ALPR useless because we believe that having nothing to hide is never a good reason to be OK with being tracked everywhere we go.
Should I be concerned about ALPR/ANPR?
We are not the only ones who think you should have concerns about this technology; the ACLU does too. Just read this PDF file published by the American Civil Liberties Union after an extensive investigation into the use of LPR systems by multiple law enforcement agencies at the local, state, and federal level (click the text to open the PDF in a new window/tab).
What is particularly disturbing is the attitudes of many of the agencies in that report. There were a staggering number of departments in which little to no oversight into how the systems were utilized by the individuals who had access to them existed. Unfortunately little has changed in regard to this fact. While some agencies have adopted more stringent protocols to prevent abuse a few concerning facts remain: almost no agencies have limited data logging to "hits" (tag plate information tied to a person of interest) alone; mass collection is still practiced. While some agencies have policies in place that limit the storage interval for collected data, the vast majority do not. Many agencies provide complete freedom to the end users (patrol, deputy, investigative officers, even private contractors) to manually enter data leaving a very real potential for abuse if a rogue officer decided to track an ex wife, a whiltleblower, or anyone else that may be the target of their misdeeds.
The federal government has been compiling a database of collected tag plate information for years. They have also been handing out grants to agencies all over the country to provide funding for the LPR technology; from big metro departments to small town police, these units have become readily attainable. Data sharing among the agencies has become common practice with manufacturers providing "hot list" updates for their clients to either download or access remotely. You can bet that the long arm of the federal law enforcement community has it's hand in the pot with any local or state agency that takes advantage of these grants.
As the ACLU states, there is already enough data mined by the LPR systems that it would not only be possible, but quite easily executed, for a complete profile of a citizen to be put together from these databases in a great number of locations across the US. These are not just tag numbers being stored. No, that may be how it started long ago before the public knew the technology even existed. Now that data includes snapshots of the vehicle, in many cases clearly showing the occupant(s) and the surroundings. Most importantly in terms of threats to our privacy, the geolocation of each and every recorded encounter are logged. This can be displayed as an overlay on a map and in short time the details of a persons private life can easily be drawn.
We cannot trust the police to police themselves, this much has been obvious for a long time. What we need is legislation to limit the use and more importantly the data storage of these LPR devices. When you consider that many estimations figure that each year the technology will become more prevalent until it is as common as a radar gun something must be done and soon. Otherwise it is just a matter of time before "big brother" is able to determine what each of us does with our free time, what our political affiliations are, whether or not we attend protests or speak out for our rights; the list goes on.
While we wait on our legislators to listen to our demands for action in limiting the use of LPR systems, we do not have to sit idly by and be subjected to mass surveillance. We have developed a way to disappear from the prying digital eyes of the LPR camera and therefore render the storage of our data in some unregulated database null. We encourage you to do the same.
Sunflexzone's anti-LPR countermeasures will prevent the infrared camera systems from getting the picture of your tag that it needs to utilize OCR (optical character recognition; converting digital pixels to machine readable data) and register a "hit". Without the capture, the color photos are often never taken, it's as if the camera were viewing a sign or some other non targeted object. If they are taken, then they cannot be associated with a reference in the database because the reference is the tag. So they end up deleted as junk data.
After reading the ACLU report above, you will see that of all the captures that are made, less than one percent is tied to a "person of interest". Rarely is this person of interest a dangerous terrorist or even a wanted felon. The vast majority of the arrests are for drivers operating on a suspended or revoked license or some other minor offense. Yet you will hear time after time the justifications for LPR systems as having prevented an abduction or terrorist and led to recovery of countless stolen cars. The agencies are as honest about this as they are about the (over) use of force.
Protect yourself from the prying eyes of the ever encroaching police state now. Check out our products and protect your right to privacy. But more importantly, spread the word about LPR systems and it's abuses, both those that may be potential as well as that which is already standard practice. Write your legislators from the local level on up. Tell them you will not stand by and watch this country turn into an all out police state. We would love to move on to selling fishing gear or performance enhancements for your hot rod; but in the meantime we will push forward with our line of countermeasures and continue the research and development to give the citizen a tool to safeguard their right to privacy.