Sometimes it’s hard to believe how much private data is actually out in the open for just anyone to browse through. As one prime example, Ars Technica recently acquired a massive list of license plate reader information just by making a simple request. In fact, the media outlet obtained the complete Oakland police department’s plate database which consists of more than 4.7 million scans from the past 3 years.
It’s clear that only a very small fraction of the plate information in the database is related to criminal activity, and Ars was able to use it to draw up a complete picture of an individual’s movements over the years. It is to be noted that Ars did all of this with the complete consent of the individuals involved.