The Murky Future of Police Databases
Is it a crime to share? Launched to serve intelligence agencies in 2004, Silicon Valley’s Palantir has branched into domestic law enforcement with its unique ability to store, analyze and classify huge amounts of data from disparate sources. Police in California are already sold: Departments covering much of the state’s population share information over the firm’s applications, accessed by nearly 5,500 users at some 25 agencies. Yet its opacity – in scope, access and pricing – now has legislators scrambling for oversight and cops wondering why critical data they’re withholding has popped up during basic searches.