Adam's Blog

Your journey is being tracked…

166 Comments

 

Sky News have conducted an investigation in to the extent of the information ANPR cameras are collecting — and keeping for 2 years — about Motorists journeys each day.

ANPR cameras to scan Drivers number plates and then log their journeys.

Whenever a vehicle passes a camera, it’s registration photo is taken and then added to the central database, which is then accessible by any Police force.

We first uncovered the fact that Police forces were doing this almost 10 years ago, just after the system was introduced in 2006, but the information being collected and stored on us has rocketed since then.

Here’s the headline figures:

9000 fixed ANPR cameras are recording us every day;

– In one single week last year over 238 Million ANPR photos were taken;

– The Governments database currently holds 22 Billion photographs of us on our daily journeys;

– Police can access these photographs without a warrant;

…and indeed they made over 300,758 checks in 2014, which was up from 194,317 in 2012;

The Information Commissioner’s Office has voiced concerns…

Jonathan Bamford from the ICO said “You’ve really got to ask the question about the extent of ANPR and the amount of records that it’s collecting.

“There are a lot of people going around on their ordinary day to day business doing nothing wrong, innocent individuals. Those are being acquired at the rate of 30 million or so a day and being retained for a number of years.

“You end up with a picture where there’s not a lot of our lives taking place which the state can’t gain access to in some ways.”

But more importantly, what do you think?

Please leave your comments below…

All the best,

Adam

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166 Comments

  1. Chris

    Next thing we know is they will be recording times between cameras and doing us for speeding if over an average speed. And why keep the information for so long, and how much does it cost to keep and analyse that data? It is wrong.

  2. Frank

    With this and the ability to access the cameras on your computers and smartphones, there is every reason to be concerned. George Orwell was right.

  3. Neil

    I am amazed at this report and can’t believe that this practice is legal.
    Surely it comes under invasion of privacy or invasion of our human rights ?

  4. Jamie Champkin

    A potential way round this spying is to have illegally sized number plates. I had plates made for a car that were accidentally classed as show plates because the letters and numbers were less than required size altho font = ok etc. Got stopped by a bored traffic cop in Cornwall and before he could help himself he said ‘if your car was stolen you’d want us to be able to track it wouldn’t you and ANPR can only read correctly sized and spaced number plates …’ I have no idea if that’s right, but if it is then carrying on paying the £100 fine….while it remains not endorsable.

  5. Richard Barugh

    This is excellent if it is helping in any way to stop or solve crime.

    If you haven’t done anything wrong there is nothing to worry about.

    I don’t mind who knows where I have been

  6. Michael Rennoldson

    Outrageous! Talk about Big Brother! Unless an ANPR photo indicates unpaid road tax, stolen vehicle, vehicle wanted in connection with a crime etc, it should be automatically deleted.

  7. Robert

    How long before they calculate the time between different cameras, and the shortest distance, to obtain an average speed. Then issue a speeding ticket if the time is too short, and therefore, you must have been going faster than the speed limit!!!

  8. N. A. Muir

    If you’re doing nothing wrong, then there is nothing to worry about! Apart from catching law-breaking motorists, which is a good thing, the information stored can be used to find out who may have been in the vicinity of a crime scene – and thus hopefully bring to justice someone who has committed an offence which in some cases has devastated an innocent person’s life.

  9. Michael

    It may have the benefit that if the police try to pin something on you when you were somewhere else at the time it could provide the proof you need. However it is doing nothing to stop the youths riding a noisy, untaxed, uninsured motorbiike with no mot or even number plates up and down my road not even wearing proper clothing or helmets!

  10. Brian

    I think it is good if you have nothing to fear.
    Years ago I was interviewed about a murder in London and after several hours I remembered I was in Liverpool. ANPR would have saved police and my time,

  11. Robert Mair

    I have always known that this is wrong but what can you do? the police have turned this country in to an unwilling police state because they know there is nothing that we the people can do, we should all tape up our number plates for one day to make a point, it seems to me that the police have lost the ability to police in a correct user friendly manner and that they are becoming more and more detached from the public, they treat everyone as the enemy.
    This info gathering must STOP ASAP.

  12. lorraine parker

    Bib brother is getting bigger, and more intrusive, it seems our government is able to sanction anything they want, they use terms like safety to convince people that it for their own protection, it isn’t, its snooping, they wont rest until we are all robots dancing to what ever tune the government plays

  13. simon

    Thank you for your email Adam, however at present I am not driving a vehicle and have not done so for the last 3 years. If the situation does change I will gladly leave a comment.

  14. Shaw

    Personally I have no problem. If I am doing nothing wrong I have nothing to fear. If my car was ever borrowed and used to do something illegal or illicit I would rather have the camera evidence to verify a journey that was not mine than have to try to prove it another way.

  15. Pachier

    Way way beyond 1984 …. Well it is
    2016 !!! . What an absolute waste of
    taxpayers funds.

  16. Ant Curtis

    I am more than happy, if it helps the police stop crime then why not.
    CCTV is exactly the same, if you are doing nothing wrong then you have nothing to worry about.

  17. Rob McCrea

    What I would like to know is how many crimes this solved and which ones were not motoring offences!
    I don’t mind big brother if it is for the greater good but this is just big brother for the sake of it!
    They need to use this for road tax and insurance fraud so the rest of us pay less!!

  18. Martin johnson

    Totally bad and should stop straight away! It’s taking away the right to privacy , freedom, they are mad in this country, it’s full on spy nation ready to put people down . Motive to make money in the end! How nice it was back in the 60 s

  19. Rosalind Wrigley

    Absolutely disgusting. But it doesn’t.t surprise me. I always believed Big Brother was watching you.

  20. Steve Orwin

    Personally I’m not worried about my tedious everyday excursions being logged. If it helps track criminals, missing persons and stolen cars, I don’t mind.

  21. Craig Newell

    Just another aspect of our daily lives (emails texts calls cctv) being recorded and kept. George Orwell was not far wrong

  22. Harbans

    I have no problem being photographed. If I am innocent why worry? Those who are guilty need worry.

  23. Duncan Young

    It’s only a matter of time before someone decides that by knowing the distance between two cameras that they can RETROSPECTIVELY issues hundreds of thousands of speeding tickets going back several years. Just about everyone goes over the speed limits occasionally, often accidentally on clear straight roads. What a fantastic little earner that would be for the government. People could lose their licences overnight and not know it until one day they opened their mail. The opportunity for abuse is there and must be resisted for the sake of keeping on top of car thieves and drug runners etc.

  24. Derek

    We pay the price for known criminals and suspected terrorists being allowed to roam free until they do something. That’s the stupid system we have.

  25. Phil Nelson

    I am sure the police can only access this if they have a valid reason for doing so. I don’t for one minute think they are interested in my whereabouts as I am a law abiding citizen so whats the problem

  26. Roger Flavell

    To be honest, it doesn’t bother me much. I doubt my movements are of any interest to the police but if they want them they’re welcome. And I’m not an “if you’ve nothing to hide you’ve nothing to fear” type. I think a bigger problem is the police doing nothing when they spot an unregistered etc vehicle. When they start pulling over pikeys and the like, and confiscating their motors I’ll believe they’re serious.
    Now tax discs have gone it’s even easier for the police to ignore anybody they don’t feel like tackling.

  27. Tony

    As most of us have smart phones, how about us photographing every police officer we see on the beat. (Oh but wait, we don’t see any do we!)

  28. Michael

    That’s awful, why don’t you make a petition Adam?
    I assume they check the plates for uninsured drivers/stolen cars/etc. After the check is done, it should be deleted, there are 2 data: the picture and the plate number.

  29. Paul Figg

    As always jobs for the pen pushers. Now they are trying to find another way of big brothering us.And I bet that they will only use it against you instead of helping you.

  30. Simon

    Is this the same police force that was recently exposed for lying to the press and to the courts about Hillsborough?

  31. Sanjay

    If you have nothing to hide then you have nothing to worry about .
    If there is a terrorist attack the first thing people want to know is why and how they were not picked up before the attack and how did they do it ?
    So without this intelligence we don’t know how many attack S have been prevented .

  32. Pete

    We have a right to privacy, our lives seem invaded in so many ways today. I would hope this helps with criminals and possible terrorism, and should be used for that purpose for sure, but do they need to track and keep everything, Why don’t they keep for 30 days ? Then delete. ?

  33. Shari

    I have nothing to hide so I really do not mind. If it helps to track the movements of dodgy characters, then all the better.

  34. Michael

    To reply to those who say they have nothing to worry as they are not criminals.
    Sure, I have nothing against ANPR, they are good to have!
    But Adam’s email is not about ANPRs existing, it is about the plate numbers and photos being kept, for EVERYONE! They should only be kept for cars that are actually flagged up (insurance, road tax, stolen, etc)

  35. Peter Scott

    I think to some extent it is a good thing it gets unisured drivees off rhe roads and that gets my vote if you have done nothing wrong then you have nothing to wury about also with all this terrorist crap thats going on they can keep an eye on their vehical activity so theres good and bad about it if BIG BROTHER is watching let them.

  36. Mole

    All for it, I drive within the law, but should my vehicle be stolen or allegation is made against someone driving a vehicle, for instance a paedophile then there is every reason to look and see what the movements are. The ANPR here is not doing speed checks. Enquires take years, keep 5 years worth and then forcibly expunge

  37. Camdenjohn

    Unfortunately we are no longer a free state but in view of the ever increasing terrorist threats to this Country I suppose it’s hardly surprising.

  38. Phillip Grice

    Is this not an infringement of our human rights.
    Perhaps a petition should be started collecting the necessary number of names to have the issue raised in Parliament

  39. Les walker

    If you are going about doing normal things, nothing illegal, then what is the worry. It can catch a lot of criminals. With our borders leaking like a colander then I see no reason for an innocent person to be concerned, it could prove a valuable alibi for you.

  40. Ian and Joan

    We don’t have a problem with this. If you have nothing to hide you have nothing to fear. AND if it detects any stolen vehicle mine or yours then all to the good. If it detects any ‘vehicle of interest’ then good too. It’s not manned 24/7 only interogated with and whne theres a reason or a concern. Other times it just pings merrily away to itself. Thats the static one, the mobiles are even better, numerous un insured, untaxed vehicles are detected. This regularly reveals many other offences too when the vehicle is stopped. Don’t forget the static ones detected the movements of the vehicle which was ‘of interest’ used by the murderers of PC Sharon Beshenivsky in Bradford a few years back. What else does it detect? It detects the movements of criminals vehicles (They don’t use busses or go on their bikes to further their activities you know) in cities going out to commit crime in the sticks where they think they are safe. We’re all for it.

  41. APB

    How on earth do we imagine the security services have thwarted Paris style terrorist attacks in the UK. If you are law abiding, then you have NOTHING to fear – We have to have infringement of some civil liberties to protect our liberal way of life and knowing where our vehicles have been should be the least of our concerns!

  42. Meeko

    There’s an ANPR gantry over the A6 south Manchester nearby… I now take an alternative route to avoid it… nosey buggers

  43. Michael Klinge

    I think it’s a good idea. Anything that helps to track criminals and terrorists is a step in the right direction.

  44. David

    Add this to face recognition and they have got us in cars and on foot. Perhaps we should all wear full face helmets and ride bikes (no front plates). If I were 50 years younger I would get out of this country.

  45. Mick S

    This is how the nazi party started. Eroding civil liberties bit by bit untill people realise then it’s too late. Might sound ridicules but read history. Was Russia a nice place when every move was watched ? This is an infringement of our rights to privacy end of and it should be stopped

  46. Greg Dessar

    Its so wrong Big Brother comes to mind they have no right to keep this practice specially when you just a normal law abiding citizen ..

  47. Robert Carpenter

    I think this is an evasion of our privacy.We should be able to access this information and delete it after a period of say a year.This may help catch criminals but why have this big brother mentality, this is England not South Korea.

  48. Davie Kerr

    Personally, I have absolutely no problem with this: I think the only people who SHOULD be worried about it are those with guilty consciences and/or something to hide, and, as I don’t come into either category, I say go ahead. I know some people may see it as an “invasion of privacy”, but that’s their problem, not mine.

  49. Lawreence Wright

    If it helps track criminals, missing persons and stolen cars, I don’t mind. If I forgegt where I have been, can I ask them to look iot up for me ?

  50. Nigel Davey

    If the Authorities used the data to assist drivers(Say, their car was stolen and tracked by ANPR’s) the fair enough, otherwise this is just snooping and invasion of privacy.

  51. Keith

    This is outrageous. Quite apart from the privacy and ‘Big Brother’ issues the cost of keeping and managing this amount of data far outweighs any benefits obtained. I’m sure the police can make a case for the data helping to solve historic crimes but the savings made by keeping only, say, 3 months worth of data could be much better employed maintaining our crumbling roads. I suspect the same scenario could also be applied to CCTV records?

  52. Mark Holder

    Personally I think it’s a bloody cheek spending our taxes on things like this, and then spying on us. Especially when there are more important things that the taxes should be spent on.

    But then, this country is a shit hole, what do you expect.

  53. David Williams

    I think this is absolutely disgusting and an infringement of civil liberty. It’s underhanded and inevitably they will use the information for some sort of illegal tax extortion as they do with everything else. What is going on with the gathering of information and spying on people’s lives is horrendous and it is laughable to think that people still think that England is a free country. It’s time there was radical reform in the government system.

  54. Malcolm MacINTYRE-READ

    I have just received proof that West Mercia Police in the Bridgnorth area are corrupt in supporting a local Town Clerk who has many questions hanging over here, including threats of violence on her behalf that the local police refuse to investigate. The use and storage of ANPR data is but another reason for my now total loss of the belief that I was brought up with, especially in the early 1950’s that we have the best police in the world. Multi-Universes anyone?

  55. Steve Donnelly

    I can’t see what the problem is, if you are not doing anything wrong then why would you worry?
    On the other hand if it is being used to track criminals in the cause of their activities I am all for it.

  56. Kevin

    If the logging were actually used for the fighting of known crime, then may be this would be OK, but it is not. ANPR is everywhere, not just roads but also at garages. They have signs which say fuel will not be dispensed before ANPR checking. If this is the case, when a criminal attempts to fill up a stolen car, why is ANPR not delivering the full potential benefits? No fuel provided, automatic call to the police? Why when roadside ANPR captures a stolen vehicle are police not immediately despatched to the road to apprehend the thief?

    Answers to all the above is that ANPR is not about crime detection, it is about snooping and surveillance. Be assured that all of this is in trial phase – this technology will be used for wide spread micro-enforcement of speed limits (revenue generation), followed by pay-per-mile (more revenue generation) use of the road network.

  57. Tony

    If you’ve ever watched any of the police tv programmes like NCIS or CSI you’ll know it happens. No problem, the data is just recorded so police can search a database if they need to find or track someone’s movements, missing person, kidnap victim, a getaway car’s route, a terrorists approach etc. I wouldn’t worry

  58. Dave

    I have no problem with this as I don’t commit crime or driving offences other than exceeding the speed limit occasionally, like most people. If these cameras help to make my life safer and the job of the police easier thats fine by me. As for keeping the pictures for ever, who cares if you have nothing to hide.

  59. Richard Keane

    Remembering the scandal over DNA records which were kept despite the courts telling the police the records should be destroyed, I think it is too late to suggest that the practice stop. The myrmidons of the law will do it anyway so let’s have it regulated and done openly with proper scrutiny.

  60. Diane Stevens

    I would like to know IF I can get all my information back from these cameras ??

  61. Rich

    You can see why Cameron and Co. want to get rid of the human rights act; we do not need it due to the fact the British public don’t have rights at all anymore, certainly not privacy rights that’s for sure.

  62. John Williams

    I agree with Richard Barugh

    This is excellent if it is helping in any way to stop or solve crime.

    If you haven’t done anything wrong there is nothing to worry about.

    I don’t mind who knows where I have been.

    Also if my car is stolen it will help it’s recovery.

  63. Martin

    I’ve got nothing against the system , as long as it’s used correctly. There’s no point in collecting all that information if you’re not going to use it. Get all those untaxed, unMOT’ed , uninsured cars and banned drivers off the road, or at least issue some fines. Track stolen cars, trucks and trailers in real time and catch the thieves. Will this happen, no way, that would require super computers, lots of man power and joined up thinking. The most we’ve got at the moment is the super computers.

  64. Ronnie

    Really! Come on, police intelligence is the only reason for crime falling, not bobbies on the beat. If used to fight crime I don’t have a problem with that. I just wish they would use this info to knock up drivers without insurance.The bigger crime is light fines these drivers get when caught! Okay, i’ll get off my soap box now.

  65. John Sawtell

    Once again like I said it won’t be long before thy micro our grandchildren . So it will Brno need for this sysdem . Why don’t we take them to the court of human rights ?????????????????????????????????

  66. John whittle

    If this is another tool to deter or solve crime it should be welcomed, unless you have something to hide. Why is there concern about usage to identify speeding motorists ? Exceeding the limits is an offence and any measures to prevent road accidents should be encouraged.

  67. Peter

    Criminals and others with something to hide use false or cloned plates. Anpr is useless against determined wrong doers. The police should be forced to get warrants to access the info. I am not in favour of this covert activity

  68. Raymond crawford

    Don’t mind photos of number plate to see if car is taxed insured and mot but be should be deleted soon after

  69. Geoff

    As a person that is neither a criminal nor a terrorist I really don’t care if my image and details are being stored by law snfordpcement. I do know that it has been essential in safeguarding me and all other law abiding citizens. So keep them working

  70. William Hollifielld

    There should be a time limit on the length of time they can keep the info.

  71. andrew

    if you have nothing to hide why worry ok you may say big brother is watching you better to be safe than sorry

  72. John Bruce

    I’ve said for years that we live in a police state and this does absolutely nothing to dispel that opinion. Why DO the police need to keep that info for 2 years? I’d sure as hell like to know the answer!

  73. Paul Bargate

    Nothing surprises me anymore in this country. sad times won’t be safe to take the car out soon, not fear of the criminals but fear of looking your licence
    Paul.

  74. David G

    AH!! but the Police can do no wrong – can they?
    We don’t go around beating up arrested people who may only have had too much to drink.
    We don’t drive at speeds in excess of 100 mph – get “clocked” by a Colleague then get a wrist slapped( Only driving an MP to a meeting !!) WILL GET DONE if we overturn a Car because we have “Driven withoout care and attention. We will get done if we stop on a Double Yellow Line just to pop into a shop for a Sandwich= but who gets off for doing this???????????????
    Mind you I am bound to finish up in clink for this probably have to do 4 Years !!

  75. Brian Godding

    I would assume these ‘databases’ will never be accessed by anybody unless the authorities are looking for specific vehicle movements related to criminal activity . They don’t even have the time to investigate crimes in general let alone our sloppy driving habits 🙂

  76. Dave D

    Well that is a surprise.. Big brother is watching you.
    Seriously this does seem to be a gross intrusion into our privacy. The old argument about if you have done nothing wrong you have nothing to worry about just does not cut it!

  77. Ian

    Who is paying for all this data gathering and collection? What budget are they using for it?

  78. Ian

    Who is paying for all this data gathering and storage? What budget are they getting the funds from?

  79. Rich

    If this is a part of the effort to keep our country safe from moronic fanatics,then so be it,I think we all have to accept that our human rights will be slightly curtailed while we monitor everone,good,bad or just a bit naughty!

  80. Dave D

    To those who say it is a good thing as the information could be used in your defence if you need to prove you were somewhere else is will just ask……..
    How do you think YOU can get hold of the evidence that you were elsewhere?

  81. John.

    Another nail in the coffin of Liberty by Big Brother. I have no problem with its use to track down uninsured drivers etc, but I also have a deep mistrust of the “establishment” following shameful events at Hillsborough & among our politicians over the years. What is to stop a witch hunt for petty misdemeanours should the beaurocratic accountants dictate it? Achieve targets through catching a motorist as opposed to real criminals.

  82. Steve Clifford

    Absolutely shocking, these cameras should be scrapped, It’s about time there was a public outcry over the amount of information that’s being collected each day, it’s definitely an invasion of privacy

  83. Monty Slocombe

    I have no fear of being tracked, anyone can know of my movements. Recorded movement has led to many criminals being convicted.

  84. Carl

    Who cares? If you have done nothing wrong then what’s the problem. In this day and age it’s too late to be moaning who has your data as its been collected for years.

  85. Graham Hill

    Was there an act of parliament passed to allow this intrusion? How can we find out to what use this info is put?

  86. Jeremy

    This is disturbing and deeply wrong. 3 angles of attack to redress the balance a Freedom of information request to ask what this information is for contact your local MP and Shami Chakribati about making this a Civil Liberties issue and start a petition to stop this practice the wording of this petition is critical ;)goodluck. I and many others will happily sign it so we can lobby the government.

  87. Gerry Foran

    Surely it is against our human rights for this information to be stored without our knowledge or consent

  88. Aitken B

    ANPR cameras are an excellent tool to assist in removing illegal vehicles from the road. But, as with all tools they can be used and abused.
    The usual “if you have nothing to hide you have nothing to fear” mantra was trotted out. If only that were true.
    We rely on the honesty and probity of those, predominantly the police, who have access to the data to act honourably and honestly. Recent events, not least those in Warrington, have shown us all the extent to which that reliance is misplaced and anyone who has attempted to defend a wrongful charge of speeding will testify the extent to which the corruption, of which we have seen merely the tip of the “iceberg” in the outcome of the Hillsborough inquest, pervades the whole legal system in UK particularly in the area of motoring law.
    Those of us who are trying to expose the many layered corruption are ever hopeful that it will one day be laid bare.
    David G seems to have observed some of the shenanigans that go on. But how about the Chief Police officer caught doing around 90 in a 50 limit and clearly thought he would “get off with it because he was JOB”. Didn’t reckon with us eagle eyed watchers. By the way, he was at the time the head of Road Traffic policing for ACPO ltd. (yes ACPO LTD – it was a Limited company with no official status although I believe it is now no longer a Limited company but still has no official status). Oh and of where was he the Chief Police officer at the time? – South Yorkshire.

  89. Ron H

    Love it. Let’s help the police any way we can. They have an extremely difficult job keeping us law abiding folk safe.
    If some of these people commenting don’t like it they should go and live somewhere else – where the police are not so vigilant, choose your example there are plenty!

  90. Col Hold

    Outrageous conduct for a government controlled authority in what is supposed to be a free society.

  91. Phil Robinson

    I thought that both the Gestapo and Stasi had been disbanded. This is an utterly disgusting abuse of my human rights, if I drive in a safe, sensible manner I should be able to drive anywhere I wish without anybody I don’t wish to know being aware at all of where I’ve been.

  92. Vin Wia

    This is Big Brother in action All photographs should be destroyed after 6 months at the latest.

  93. johnny Anderson

    To be honest I don’t care one bit I abide by the law and if one just one of those pictures brings a criminal or terrorist to justice then all the better. I’d rather they have pictures and information than none get off their backs and thank goodness we are in a relatively safe country bease of our police forces and security services

  94. Tom Davies

    Tracking of vehicles that are “suspect” or possibly involved in criminal activities or terrorism using ANPR is an essential tool.
    How would you feel if this was banned by the Court of Public Opinion and you lost someone close to you – pretty awful I think. If you have done nothing wrong why worry>

  95. Bill New

    I hope mp’s and royalty are treated in the same way, but I doubt it.Talk about a police state.

  96. Alan Carlton

    I helped install these cameras on a touring park entrance. If you fix the plates to car with black bolt heads visible between the letters most cameras cant read the plate

  97. Bill Green

    If this info was being stored and used for the right and proper reasons then I would have no problem with it. However, we have seen too often that this is not always the case and that misuse cannot be controlled. I also wonder what would happen if I were to request a copy of the information being held relative to my vehicle under the Freedom of Information Act?

  98. Michael

    I notice the very weak people that roll out the old chestnut “If you aren’t doing anything wrong, you shouldn’t be bothered” are vocal on here! The point is for all you pussies…where does the erosion of freedom end? The more rights you give away the more the state will take! Get some back bone and get angry!

  99. Harold Mathews

    Brilliant, this is how it should be and anybody that thinks it is wrong should move to a different country!!!!

  100. Peter j Childress

    It is like the terrorism act,it is mainly used by councils to chase up council tax.Im getting sick and tired of this Orwellian governance that use our details without our written permission.A signed warrant should be the minimum requirement we should demand

  101. Bill Turner

    I have no problem with this at all. It probably helps to catch criminals and also people who don’t pay their road tax. I pay my road tax so why should other people not pay.

  102. Richard Kwiecinski

    Personally,I am not concerned about being monitored. However, such an intrusion into the privacy of individuals I think iswrong in a free society. Catch criminals, yes but leave innocents alone, please

  103. Les Blake

    George Orwell would be really proud to know how much we as UK citizens are so closely watched – he wrote a scenario such as this in 1984 – successive governments are obsessed with getting every item of our personal data on to as many databases as they can.

    This is nothing new of course as it has been going on for years – in the 1980’s both the British and US governments were using satelite technology that enabled them to read the date on a newspaper held in the hands of a person in Trafalger Square – with modern electronics imagine what they can look at now.

    Big Brother has been here for some time and we, as members of the public, have no chance whatsoever in stopping the nefarious practices

  104. Vince

    Ten years ago I would have been outraged, but in todays vunerable western democratic society if this can be used to track and stop one terrorist from carrying out a single action then I am not concerned. You may ask why im not concerned and serve me with all the reasons I should be, and my answer would be I have nothing to hide.

  105. Nige

    The paid government trolls, a plethora of numpties, together with a substantial number of brain dead brits are out in force on this one! Despite the sensible comments of many, the UK is clearly well on its way to becoming an idiocracy if the number of comments originating from government cheer-leaders is anything to judge by! The powers of the state today, albeit one that many here believe to be kind, caring and not at all nefarious, would make the late Erich Honeker green with envy! Wake up before its too late!

  106. Topless Trader

    Some interesting comments, not least by Aitken B. The reality is, in our current state of a peaceful society, then data collection seems innocuous. The ‘bad guys’ will be caught and punished, the ‘good guys’ have nothing to fear….. Utter rubbish. The reality is that the police are generally stupid and ineffectual, allied by an equally inept court system. I know, I’ve had plenty of experience of both… either side of the fence! There is very little evidence that the ANPR system leads to conviction, though it may lead to clues, aiding investigation. As regards arrest, if a police car is fitted with APNR eqpt, then great, but the majority are not. Real criminals are aware of what the police do, and prepare. The general public don’t. The bigger picture is what happens if the regime changes, andthe data then falls into the hands of the now-malevolent rulers. Don’t dismiss this. Rwanda was a case in point. Thanks to the Belgian imposed govt, an identity scheme was imposed. When they withdrew, the tutsi’s were able to identify the Hutu’s ( please forgive spelling ) and sought to commit genocide, thanks to data collection. Think it can’t happen again?

  107. peter

    Shocking intrusion into our privacy. With this and other covert data gathering, eg store loyalty cards, we might just as well declare daily everything about ourselves and our movements on Facebook or similar!!!Very surprised at the number of ‘holier than thou’ responses, or is it just plain naivety?

  108. G.Kessler

    To justify this the Police should publish the benefits, that is how much serious crime has this been critical to solving to getting a conviction?

  109. Stuart Harrison

    No one has said what ANPR is and why it was built and what it actually does- yes I’ve seen the blue painted posts with the cameras on the top. What does ANPR mean?

    Actually I’d say that it’s is total waste of money….

  110. Marts

    Hi all. In this country the police, police by consent. We should simply get together in sufficient numbers and withdraw our consent until they pull back on the police state.

    I hear some say we need the police,, I completely agree.

    However Policing by consent and a militarised police state are completely different animals.

    Stand up for your rights (human rights), there’s way more of us than them.

  111. Matt

    I am not really that surprised that the UK has turned into a covert prejudiced bigot Fascist Nazi police state, tracking our car / motorbike journeys, CCTV cameras everywhere (making the UK the most watched country on the face of the planet) and also reading our emails and messages (the Edward Snowden affair). Privacy no longer exists anymore and is nothing more than an illusion.

  112. JUDGY

    AS LONG AS THEY USE THE INFORMATION THEY HAVE CORRECTLY AND DO NOT ABUSE THERE POWERS , BUT THIS IS THE POLICE WE ARE TALKING ABOUT, SO WHAT DATA ARE THEY TRYING TO COLLECT, AND TO WHAT MEANS ARE THEY USING THE INFORMATION THEY HAVE , TO BE HONEST IT CAN BE HELP FULL, BUT IF THEY ARE JUST TROLLING , YES TROLLING TO SEE WHO THEY CAN DO THEN ITS WRONG

  113. Len Donovan

    Catch the bus!
    Invariably I do nowadays,
    suppose the thought controllers will find a way round that someday, but in the meantime raspberries to the lot….

  114. Chris McKie

    I thought that these camera’s only recorded info on vehicles and or drivers with problem history and this was the info stored for the purposes of prosecution, not storing every cars position and date. This is an infringement of our privacy and would be in breach of the ICO rules

  115. Ray

    Crooks and villains won’t like it, but if your law abiding, can’t see the problem

  116. Neil Pereira

    In principle and in keeping with a free and democratic society any government does not have the right to accumulate data without informing the person(s) concerned. To do so ‘covertly’ is to circumvent that right that wars have been fought over

  117. Chris

    Interesting that your blog came out at the same time as a story on BBC London News last night that several thousand people are driving round London without Driving Licenses and are thus presumably uninsured.

    One wonders in the Brexit debate what proportion are immigrants.

  118. Graham

    More “Big Brother” in our free? Society. It’ll be the “Thought Police” next.

  119. Vic Harby

    If you are driving within the law then you have nothing to worry about, but if you are not then you must except findings.

  120. bob williams

    If it helps catch the bad guys then hell, they can have as many photos as they want of my bleary-eyed commute to work every day.

  121. alan

    On paper, how it’s being used now is ok. The problem is once this is expanded it can’t be removed if it starts to be abused by a corrupt power against the proletariat.

  122. peter

    I asked my MP about the holding of information taken via ANPR cameras several years ago and was told the info was primarily to track the whereabouts of criminals. After a few months,(I think he said three), the information was to be deleted by a responsible police officer. So 2years is a few months????

  123. Gregory Scott

    Recently it has been stated that there are hundreds of un-tested, and therefore un-insured motorists on our roads. Catching them should be a priority for the police.

  124. Simon

    Judging by the lack of response to my previous posting, nobody understood what I was trying to say. So let me spell it out. According to Google, there are over 125,000 police officers in the UK. I imagine all of them have access to the information mentioned here. Surely at least one of those 125,000 is corrupt. This person could easily use this information to burgle our homes, blackmail us, or worse.

  125. Londonliz

    Even if you have done nothing wrong why would anyone want to be monitored 24 hours a day? It is my private business where I go, this is just a way to enable the state to use it against you by coming up with penalty charges and fines and to criminalize people, Try fighting an unjust parking ticket and you know how hard it is, so imagine this.I bet you if your car got stolen and you asked them to track it by their ANPR system they would not do it, stating resources. But if you went 4mph over the limit you will be hunted down, so people wake up to what is happening in our country.

  126. Boromoor

    Not sure how I feel about this, yes it is good that they can track wrong doers but I personally don’t like the idea of being watched by the authorities. I suppose it’s the price we have to pay if we want to fight crime today.

  127. Don Perkins

    It would appear that we.are rapidly going from Police protection to Police persecution. I wonder if this practise is instigated by the government who can’t be trusted either. We live in a rapidly growing communist state. I am nearly 79 and over the successive governments in my lifetime I’ve collected enough evidence to prove that we have for many years been governed by lies and spin. I wouldn’t be surprised if what I’ve just written is monitered and stored somewhere……..DonPerkins

  128. Bob W

    I do feel that there are, as usual, two sides to a story. Firstly to track criminals and try to understand their routine, secondly to try to keep a track on the movement of terrorists.
    Speeding fines cannot be issued by this means as to do so would be illegal.
    In this dangerous world we live in equal balance must be given as to the needs and our privacy. If I am tracked that is OK by me because I know they are wasting their time but if one terrorist, drug dealer or people trafficker is apprehended then I accept the necessity.

  129. Joe Cooke

    Not happy about it. Government is getting far too involved in our personal lives. But then, you try taking on the government.

  130. J.B.

    I believe data protection requires that inrmation on individuals is given with consent and only used for the purpose it was given.

  131. Mack the Knife

    Intrusiveness of a most disgusting kind. Some way must be found to stop it.

  132. A Ford

    If ANPR is used for untaxed vehicles, why do DVLA have their own roadside check vehicles?
    If ANPR is used for vehicle checks why isn’t every untaxed,unmoted,uninsured and unregistered vehicle removed from the road?
    I read somewhere these cameras can’ photograph the driver as well, couple these with the new Haydecs 3 cameras and driving my 300/ 400 miles a day for my employer is becoming a real stress.

  133. Alastair

    I drive for a living all over the British Isles I think it’s a liberty by the police and the government to keep all this pictures and information when they can’t keep illegals c–ts out

  134. Rick Murphy

    Just another example of the dictatorship we all live in. These pictures should not even be stored for 1 min never mind 2 years.

  135. David

    The police do nothing in imigrant areas. Why not. Very easy to pick on the law abiding ENGLISH man

  136. Sue

    If it helps to save even one abducted child/person, catch one hit and run driver, a terrorist or anyone else not obeying the law then it is worth it. I’m sure that the persons citing human rights would be changing their tunes if it affected them.

  137. Leon Shrewsbury

    Not bothered really by this, as i’m not doing anything illegal.

    Also, this is kind of data is really useful for Base Year Origin-Destination movements when trying to build a car matrix for a transport model (used in developing transport models to assess transport schemes, and impacts on the road network from housing developments etc)

  138. John

    I was wrongly accused of speeding in an area which was 150 miles away from me at the time. This system was used to track my whereabouts and prove that I was not guilty of the offence. If you have nothing to hide there is nothing to fear from this and it could do a lot of good.

  139. Kevin

    I work voluntarily for the police searching for missing people with (ACPO approved)trained search dogs. If the missing person is going to self harm and using a car, the ANPR information is very useful for giving direction of travel and saves valuable time.

  140. bill tomson

    this has been going on ,but wot do we do bury our heads in the sand,i have noticed over last ten yr or so we have lost are freedom of speech ,its being very subtle but open your mouth and you get locked up and £100 fine dusent this smack of 1939 again but this county has lost the will of british poeple who cares anymore

  141. Adrian French

    The police have got to be seen to be doing something, this is easy for them, just don’t ask for help from them they are useless if the problem is not related to traffic.

  142. Clem

    If you do nothing wrong I do not see a problem. It may help to keep drivers & cars etc legal.

  143. David Morris

    If there is no evidence that this practice is, in any way whatsoever,being used successfully to prevent or solve crimes then it should be made illegal.It’s an outrageous intrusion in to personal privacy.I think we should be told.

  144. David Glen

    Zeig heil. Roll on the Police State. Seems we shouldn’t have bothered fighting the second World War. Germany now rules Europe and we are all being spied on and our e-mails read. Why do you want my name and address?

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