Street poll: Drones OK for crime control
A Newsbytes street poll has found people are not concerned about the idea of high-tech surveillance drones as long as they are used only for crime control.
Queensland Police could trial unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in the near future.
Queensland Council for Civil Liberties president Michael Cope said he didn’t want to ban UAVs but insisted they should be regulated.
“If police are going to use these things they need to be authorised by a warrant issued by a judge like other surveillance equipment such as listening devices,” Mr Cope said.
He said he had concerns about private organisations obtaining UAVs and whether the Privacy Act was able to cover this technology or if new legislation was required.
Mr Cope said people in this social media and Google-Earth age had become blasé about privacy until it encroached on their own.
“You might be photographed going to a psychiatrist and not want anyone else to know that,” he said.
Mr Cope said history was littered with examples of people’s privacy being invaded sometimes with fatal consequences.
“If you were a Jew in Germany in 1925 then the fact that everyone knew you were a Jew probably meant nothing to you. But by 1939 you would probably have a different view,” he said.
In the Newsbytes poll Brisbane resident Moin Silver said Queenslanders would feel comforted by the knowledge that the police were watching from above.
“If it’s to prevent crime and not invade people’s privacy then I’m sure people would appreciate that,” he said.
Miranda Wilderbrew of Brisbane said if citizens obeyed the law they should have no concerns.
“It would be good to protect people as long they’re not using it to invade peoples privacy. And if you’re doing everything right you should be okay,” she said.