Security Risks of Street Photography [Update]

We live in really, really sad times. People are being increasingly harassed for taking photos of public buildings, bridges etc. (at least in the US).

There's quite a bunch of interesting comments in Bruce Schneier's blog. Basically, everyone seems to think that such measures are just plain stupid. I tend to agree.

I notice more and more misdirected efforts to "secure" our world. I'll tell you a secret: terrorists most probably won't publicly photograph any targets, they'll do it covertly, using cell phone cameras or very small miniature cameras, or whatever. Measures such as forbidding photography of public buildings simply annoy tourists, artists, or random people who like photography.

What's next? Forbid email, because terrorists could use it to communicate? Forbid planes, because terrorists could use them to destroy buildings? Forbid snail mail, because terrorists could send letter bombs? Forbid cars, because terrorists could crash them into shopping malls?

Can you spot a pattern here? You can't just forbid perfectly sound and non-malicious activities or technologies to "battle terrorism" — that's just plain stupid. You will piss off a lot of people. And it won't help anything to stop terrorists.

Update: Waaaaah! Now they try to abolish broadband Internet on planes (or at least they want to spy on you) — after all, terrorists could trigger bombs using the Internet. Yeah... I can't believe how fucking stupid some people can be.

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Apathy

Frankly Uwe, the more people that are pissed off soonest the better. It is in large part public apathy that allows these ludicrous regulations to be developed without reference to people who actually have a few clues on the subject.

Here in Australia you can also get arrested for taking a photograph that might include small children. After all, who else but a PEDOPHILE would be taking pictures of children???

1. As I said: We live in sad

1) As I said: We live in sad times.
2) Concerning the public apathy, I'm afraid you are very, very right.
3) GOTO 1).