Information is power – and 'big tech' has both

Monday, October 28, 2019
 | 
Steve Jordahl (OneNewsNow.com)

technology (generic)The major technology companies could have more national security data than the federal government, according to a panel of experts at The Heritage Foundation.

When the FBI or local police department gets stuck trying to solve their latest robbery or murder, they might want to check with Facebook – or Google – or Amazon or Apple. Chances are one of the big tech firms has clues law enforcement doesn't.

At a recent symposium given by The Heritage Foundation, senior research fellow Klon Kitchen said the burden and capability for national security is shifting to the private sector. "What we have always traditionally called intelligence – the ability to collect, understand, predict and ultimately influence human behavior – Google calls that marketing," he explained.

Facebook, Amazon, Google, and the other big tech companies collect reams of information about consumers – because consumers volunteer the information.

Kitchen

"The first question in terms of what do these companies know about us: quite a bit," Kitchen continued. "And they know it because we give it to them. And we give it to them in return for services and tools. And they're pretty great services and tools."

According to the tech policy expert, these companies sometimes team up with law enforcement to help them solve crimes and bolster national security. A doorbell camera, for example, can be used to track the movement of a suspect's car as it passes a house; or the police can look at cell phone tower data to see where an individual has been over the last few days.

"They have come up with an ability to gain access to that information and to leverage that information in ways that are, frankly, novel; and that, in many ways, surpass what the government has historically been able to do," he added.

Kitchen is Heritage's first senior fellow for technology, national security, and science policy.

Comments

We moderate all reader comments, usually within 24 hours of posting (longer on weekends). Please limit your comment to 300 words or less and ensure it addresses the article - NOT another reader's comments. Comments that contain a link (URL), an inordinate number of words in ALL CAPS, rude remarks directed at other readers, or profanity/vulgarity will not be approved. More details

FEATURED PODCAST

SIGN UP FOR OUR DAILY NEWSBRIEF

SUBSCRIBE

VOTE IN OUR POLL

If I had to choose one thing I like about the just-passed 'pandemic relief' bill, it would be …

CAST YOUR VOTE

GET PUSH NOTIFICATIONS

SUBSCRIBE

LATEST AP HEADLINES

Trump extends virus guidelines, braces US for big death toll
Hundreds at Louisiana church flout COVID-19 gatherings ban
Storms, tornadoes damage homes, businesses in Midwest, South
US-led forces pull out of 3rd Iraqi base this month
US agency includes gun sellers as ‘critical’ infrastructure

LATEST FROM THE WEB

Congress just created a brand new dependency class
A salute to the real heroes
Some Liberty University students back on campus praise decision to reopen
Thank the Second Amendment: Armed hero stops possible mass shooting
WaPo bashes homeschooling during coronavirus epidemic

CARTOON OF THE DAY

Cartoon of the Day
NEXT STORY
Liberals aghast over Zuckerberg defending democracy

Facebook like buttonFacebook’s billionaire founder is triggering the Left, and surprising conservatives, over the issue of censoring unpopular and controversial opinions.