Police call car tag cameras a useful tool; others worry about pr - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Police call car tag cameras a useful tool; others worry about privacy

Some Georgia police agencies are wielding automatic license plate scanners, which include sophisticated cameras that capture a variety of information about motorists. They are using them to hunt for stolen vehicles, missing children, fugitives, even suspected terrorists.

But the tag readers can capture images of any vehicles they are pointed at, regardless of whether the drivers are breaking the law or not. Some police agencies are holding onto millions of these images — including the dates and times they were photographed and their geographic coordinates — for years, an Atlanta Journal-Constitution investigation shows.

Privacy watchdogs are worried. They point out such data could create detailed maps of motorists' private lives. And the images are publicly accessible under Georgia's Open Records Act.

Lawmakers in Georgia and nine other states are now considering legislation to regulate the devices.

Read more: http://www.myajc.com/news/news/state-regional-govt-politics/police-call-car-tag-cameras-a-useful-tool-others-w/nj5Zw/#65ade575.257099.735638

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