Texas DPS Has a New High-Tech Eye in the Sky
Texas’ state police force is beefing up its aerial surveillance technology.
The use of aerial drones for domestic surveillance has drawn a lot of controversy nationwide, and while that debate has raged on, the Texas Department of Public Safety has quietly moved ahead with increasing its aerial surveillance technology through other means.
G.W. Schulz, an Austin journalist covering homeland security for the Center for Investigative Reporting, spoke with KUT’s Nathan Bernier about the state’s new piloted surveillance aircraft, and whether people will be worrying about their privacy.
These types of piloted aircraft haven’t really figured into the public debate much around unmanned aircraft, but this is the case with a lot of 21st-century law enforcement tools. The courts have yet to catch up on them; just earlier this year the courts caught up to the issue of when police can affix a GPS monitoring device to a vehicle, for instance. The evolution of the technology itself is occurring very very very rapidly, and you’re not even going to see this technology in the courts unless someone challenges it.