I was having coffee the other day with a friend. We were sitting outside because for the first time ever the Starbucks where I usually stop when I am out and about, was full. Literally I’ve never stopped there, ever when all the tables were full. This time they were, so it was a little brisk but we sat outside. Enjoyed our coffee and discussed the issue that brought us together for that day/meeting.
While we were sitting, I started noticing a number of new devices that were attached to the street light poles. They were pointing at the road, and from the distance I was sitting they appeared to be camera’s. They were not red-light cameras, they appeared to be traffic cameras.
I am all for traffic cameras and I understand the growing numbers in high congestion areas. The area where the Starbucks sits is a high congestion area. With freeway access (the I-270 parking lot has northbound and southbound parking entrances in the area). On the other side of the I-270 parking lot is the Lake Forrest Mall. It is right near the heart of downtown Gaithersburg Maryland. So, busy, cameras are a good idea.
Waze, and my person favorite INRIX have access to traffic cameras so I logged in to see if in fact they were cameras you could access. They are not.
There are cameras out there today that provide video security for locations, businesses and places that don’t exist. There are video feeds that are there for vehicle movement (is traffic flowing properly). Red light cameras wait for you to make a mistake. Although, if there is no “No Turn on Red” sign posted and you come to a complete stop, the Red-light camera shouldn’t tag you if there is no oncoming traffic as you turn. It is legal to turn right on red unless marked.
There are many kind of cameras around us now. The worst of course is the cell phone of the person you are meeting. If their phone is blujacked or hacked, you could be sharing your thoughts, ideas and solutions to problems with someone you don’t know, who isn’t at the table sucking down a pumpkin, vanilla Latte with you. They are sitting in their hosue, miles away listening and watching the conversation.
That got me thinking and looking more. After my friend headed back to their office, I drove back to my office. As I was driving I started looking at every stop light (when I was stopped) at the camera’s that were or were not on the poles. Some lights, don’t have poles. Some speed cameras are boxes by the side of the road, not really cameras on the lights. But there are many more, when you stop and look than there were before.
My new car has a camera in it, that shows you a 360-degree view around your car as you are parking, or reversing the car. You can, purchase cameras that see all around you and literally record as you drive. There are HUD (heads up displays) that will show you what your car is doing right now. By the way, they also record you’re driving as far as speed and type of driving. So, if you have an accident and the other person says you were speeding and that caused the accident your device plugged into your car’s management port, can actually be used as evidence against the other driver’s claim.
Connection is everywhere. Simple security is always the best starting point. The real reality of wearable technology risks is two-fold. The first is the reality of digital rudeness. I talked about that a couple of days ago. The other is the reality of wearables is to get the instant information that the wearable produces you have to walk around with your Bluetooth turned on. BT = risk. So, what can you do? First off know the devices you have connected to your devices. If you see something new that you didn’t connect select that device and select forget this device in Bluetooth options. Yes, you’ve lost however long that device was connected to you. But if it is gone at least going forward you don’t have the risk. In fact, check your BT devices once a week or more. Then you reduce your risk even further. Good security hygiene makes up for some risk. Not all risk, but some.
Now as for public hygiene that is harder. How do you behave in public? Your risk is greater now than ever before. If you do something you shouldn’t do, there might be a camera watching. Some people don’t care if they are caught, they figure finding any one person is far too difficult. Sadly, they are mistaken. Don’t make a mistake. Remember the old inside voices rule? Make sure you follow the outside behavior rule as well.
(don’t do anything in public that you wouldn’t do in front of your mother).