Let's Play ... Virtual Border Patrol!

A new $2 million surveillance project in Texas lets you patrol the US border with Mexico from the comfort of your own home, and report any suspicious activity you see.

The project results in one crime bust in the six week it has been on, but it was a biggie: "virtual deputies" spotted three suspects trying to smuggle 540 pound of marijuana across the border. According to Wired:

The exact location of the cameras is not disclosed, but according to a press release about the project, "a significant number of Texas landowners" requested that the cameras be placed on their property.

More than 21,000 people from several states, including as far away as Ohio, have signed up to be virtual deputies so far. BlueServo claims its web site has received more than 5 million hits, resulting in about 1,000 e-mail reports of suspicious activity. The average camera watcher spends about eight minutes on the site examining video.

What do virtual deputies get in return for their efforts?

Aside from the satisfaction of knowing they've done their part to combat crime, they get the opportunity to become targeted consumers.

http://blog.wired.com/27bstroke6/2008/12/2-million-texas.html | Here's the webcam: BlueServo - via Attuworld

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As usual with the 100% worthless POS Vista I cannot get it to work. Says I need a plug in which I already have, so I click it and in the blink of an eye something happens so fast I can't tell what it is. Looks like a DL, but is too fast to be one. I like the idea though.

If I was in charge I'd build a 1 mile wide moat along the entire border and pay bounties on everyone stopped that's trying to invade my country. Then I'd attack Mexico for aiding and abetting this invasion from the highest levels of their government. It's no less an attack than the one on Pearl Harbor.
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Geekazoid, it's not "political issue" on a local level. As a former resident of South Texas, I can tell you it's very much a "crime and safety issue" for the folks who live near the border.

Not all the folks who cross the border into the US are nice people just looking for better lives. Many of them are drug smugglers. Others are happy to break and enter, rob, steal (and worse) on their trip north.

Better the camera system than a pack of trigger-happy racist vigilantes.
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It's The Running Man. Hook up existing cameras in stores and on public streets to the Internet. Do a body scan of Richard Dawson while he's still alive so he can be a virtual TV host.

Win fabulous prizes by reporting your fellow neighbors.
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