Privacy has a lot to do with how the data that is collected on you gets used. Controlling these issues is such a new area of concern that it hasn’t even been adequately addressed through legislation yet. I wouldn’t mind all of the cameras in public places as long as the data is not analyzed and the resulting information indexed.
Let’s say that there are cameras rolling at all times inside and outside of a given bank. Someone goes in wearing a ski-mask and robs the bank at gunpoint. The camera recordings are analyzed afterward which leads to other camera footage or more clues. Eventually the bank robber is identified and caught. That use of the technology is good.
But what if the cameras are all hooked up to facial recognition software? Let’s say the facial recognition software coordinates with GPS data on all cell phone users to map everywhere everyone goes every day of their lives, and stores your daily path through the world every day in a database. In such a case, the guy with bad intentions, a ski-mask, and no cell phone is the only person that can’t be tracked using automated means. So the unwarranted surveilance on everyone else should be illegal. That doesn’t mean they can’t collect data. But it should be illegal to index the data in certain ways. Let the data be analyzed after the fact if there is a good reason, like if a crime is committed.
In the case of a license plate, no one and certainly no government should use automated license plate readers to record every license plate that passes by except at the National ports of entry in to the country. Anyone in traffic can read my license plate and no one cares what it says as long as I act lawfully and with civil good behavior. That’s where it should end. If they put facial cameras and plate readers on all on-ramps and off-ramps and archive that data digitally, they violate the people’s privacy rights.
I really want to buy a Tesla. If I do it’ll be a deal with the devil like the one I have with my Android phone. We somewhat prostitute ourselves in exchange for convenience. Sure, if someone steals my car, it would be nice that Tesla can find my car and disable it remotely. But it’s still wrong that if you want to own that kind if car, that you have to give up your privacy and allow someone else to control the car (if they so choose) in exchange.