NYPD’s ‘Domain Awareness’ Surveillance System, Built By Microsoft, Unveiled By Bloomberg
A technician works on a New York City Police Department security camera in Times Square May 5, 2010. US officials Wednesday
A technician works on a New York City Police Department security camera in Times Square May 5, 2010. US officials Wednesday ratcheted up security in the wake of the botched Times Square bomb plot amid a growing global investigation into a Pakistani-American suspect’s links to terror groups. Washington tightened ‘no-fly’ procedures after the alleged New York car bomber was allowed to board a flight to Dubai despite being red-flagged by the authorities.Suspect Faisal Shahzad, 30, who has been charged with five counts of terrorism, almost fled aboard an Emirates flight from New York as he realized US police were closing in on him, US officials have revealed. AFP PHOTO /TIMOTHY A. CLARY (Photo credit should read TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images)
Police Commissioner Ray Kelly and Mayor Michael Bloomberg unveiled the NYPD’s latest crime-tracking and surveillance system “Domain Awareness” on Wednesday.
“Domain Awareness” is the product of a joint venture with Microsoft, who developed the system’s complex network of 3,000 cameras and 2,600 radiation detectors.
The department hopes the “all-seeing” system will help preemptively combat any terrorist activities as well as reduce incident response times. CBS reports the system has been designed to:
Identify whether a radiation alarm was set off by actual radiation, a weapon, or a harmless medical isotope
Track where a suspect’s car is located, and where it has been in the past few days, weeks or months
Instantly see a suspect’s arrest record, and 911 calls related to the crime
The system cost between $30 to $40 million to make, but by partnering with Microsoft, the city hopes to sell the technology to other police departments around the country and “recoup all of our expenses over a period of time and maybe even make a few bucks.”
Under the business agreement, the city will rake in 30 percent of the profits sold.
At Wednesday’s press conference, Bloomberg dismissed criticism “Domain Awareness” was a move to achieve “Big Brother” omniscience and said, “What you’re seeing is what the private sector has used for a long time. If you walk around with a cell phone, the cell phone company knows where you are…We’re not your mom and pop’s police department anymore.“
Kelly praised the development. “The system is a transformative tool,” he said, “because it was created by police officers for police officers...the system allows us to connect the dots by instantly tapping into the details of crime records, 911 calls, license plate readers, videotape footage and more.”more » « less