Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Earth First vs Security Cameras

It seems that the lowly but ubiquitous security camera has attracted the ire of the loosely knit environmental activist organization Earth First. They recently announced a year-long contest to see who could disable the most security cameras. It doesn’t appear that there is any specific environmental complaint linked to this contest; just a general anarchistic response to a sense of lost privacy. Or maybe the cameras are interfering with the successful completion of other Earth First related environmental actions.

The organization (a very grand term for this loosely organized collection of activists) seems to have spent some time and effort on this contest. They have posted a very interesting article on their news site providing some details on various techniques that can be used to attack these cameras. Particular attention has been targeted at traffic cameras.

There was a brief post last week over on the Association of  State Drinking Water Administrators (ASDWA) blog about this contest.  Reprinted from the WaterISAC Pro Weekly newsletter, the author notes:

“Locations that have experienced higher levels of environmental activism or violence should evaluate the potential threat posed by this contest and the actions of other ideologically similar groups. In addition, areas where new development is taking place, such as the controversial Key Stone Pipeline, or that may otherwise be considered environmentally sensitive may be at greater risk.”

The cameras at greatest risk, of course, are those that exist outside of a security perimeter. They would certainly be more susceptible to attack than those on the protected side. In fact, I would suggest that any camera attacked within the perimeter indicates a major security breach and may be an indicator of an insider with sympathies with Earth First or one of its related radical environmental organizations.

Any such ‘attacks’ should be reported to the local police, but efforts should be made to stop news organizations from writing about specific attacks to deny the perpetrators gaining credit in this contest.

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