Profiling on Fast-Growing Crime-Fighting Technologies

Topics: HTTP cookie, Internet privacy, Web bug Pages: 6 (2034 words) Published: June 18, 2013
Profiling On Fast-Growing Crime-Fighting Technologies
Kenny Ozuna Cedano
Instituto Tecnológico de Santo Domingo (INTEC)
Faculty of Sciences and Humanities
Rhetoric and Composition (AHH-202)
Santo Domingo, National District, Dominican Republic
April 19th, 2013

Profiling On Fast-Growing Crime-Fighting Technologies
Even though crime-fighting technologies give a broad advantage in police investigations, many citizens have arrived at the point of asking themselves whether its use will sooner or later cause the loss of constitutional rights. When these types of technologies are used to reduce crimes, they often received the support of the citizens because it made them feel safe and secure, but at the same time these technologies raise a host of ethical, legal and other issues including privacy, equality, security and liability concerns. Furthermore, it is true that these technologies have given citizens safety and have reduced crime. However, over the years the incorrect employment of these behavioral and internet technologies have led to inappropriate and damaging profiling of citizens. One important point of view upheld by the opposing side is that behavioral technologies have helped us fight crime over the years; however, it has also shown that more and more people are being profiled by these technologies. Now, since profiling is a behavioral and investigative tool that is intended to help investigators to accurately predict and profile the characteristics of unknown subjects, the Mosaic-2000 can be used as the perfect example to explain how these type behavioral technologies lead to negative profiling. For instance, the Mosaic-2000 described by the journalist Francis X. Clines (1999), in The New York Times, is “A computer program designed to identify students who might be prone to commit violent acts”; or how Kelly Patricia puts it “Rooting out the bad seeds,” (O’Meara, 2000), which means that they will hand-pick the violent students as if they were picking a rotten apple from the sack. Furthermore, since this program rose after the deadly rampage at Columbine High School, they began testing it at more than 20 schools. Consequently, these events led to claims of some like Steve Dackin, principal of the Reynoldsburg High School, who considers the Mosaic as being a useful tool, but it is au contraire because this is just a “Program designed to classify students as potentially dangerous, based on data fed into a black box” argues Raymond Vasvari the legislative director of the ACLU, (Clines, 1999). What is more, the opposing side noted that school’s administrators must already maintain confidential files on trouble students who might veer toward violence, so the Mosaic will be nothing more than a highly useful software which its “Immediate virtue would be in producing detailed documentation of its evaluation of a trouble student, so that doubting parents could no longer challenge an administrator’s judgment as too subjective”, asserts Dackin. However, the problem for those wary educators caught up in such psychological experiments is that parents will not have a clue about what soon could amount to criminal profiling of every child. In addition, it has also been claimed that the Mosaic-2000 will involve only students who give cause for special concern because “We certainly would not want to develop any kind of tool for labeling students in any way”, says Andrew Vita, (Clines, 1999). Reynoldsburg school’s officials expressed as well confidence that the confidentiality of students’ records required by law would not be breached by Mosaic, and that the software would not be connected to any central data program. Nevertheless, beyond the immediate schools’ officials, where is the student’s information sent, how might it affect the future of the students and for how long will it stay on record? Moreover, “If the data does work, what will the schools do with it? Will they segregate the potentially violent students,...
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