Monday, June 18, 2007

"Good to Go" and Track You Down With

The News Tribune today points out the record keeping that will go along with the Good to Go program. Twenty four cameras and a log record of your travel will be available for eight and one half years after the fact. A similar system in San Francisco has already been used in civil cases by attorneys who in one instance were able to refute location claims in a custody case.

In a way it is reminiscent of the scene in "Minority Report" where Tom Cruise's character is tracked by the marketing signs along the route he walks. Each sign is able to determine who he is and direct their advertising specifically to him. In "Enemy of the State" the idea is taken to the extreme, with the plot concept that no matter which direction Will Smith runs and hides, a rogue spy unit chasing him are able to trace his whereabouts.

Now aside from the retinal scans (Minority) and the multiple bugs (Enemy), the idea of data tracking for location purposes is basically the same concept. And in the case of Good to Go, I don't spend that much time worrying about it. Hey, they let us track the bridge expansion joint on its way from Idaho, so "quid pro quo" right?

I have my Good to Go transponder, and though the data is going to be collected every time I cross the bridge, I don't care. If that data were ever needed, I am willing to bet that it would be to my benefit as opposed to my detriment. Furthermore, if it is not going to be the Toll data, then it is going to be the stop light cameras, my cell phone records, my credit and debit card purchases or the in store security cameras.

Of course, when they try to embed the chip in my head, I'll probably take a pass on that.

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