Red Light Cameras
Red Light Cameras Exposed Thousands To
News for Public
If you've been caught on a red light camera lately, you may have more bad
news on the way. Your private information may have been seen by identity
thieves all over the world. That's what 8800 motorists who traveled through
Savannah, Georgia learned last week.
Identity thieves have had easy access to the sensitive personal
information on motorists who tripped the city's red light camera since last
A citizen noticed the problem when he searched for a name on Google and
found the photos, name, date of birth, address and sometimes
Security Numbers of ticket recipients in the results.
Lawsuits Against Red Light and Traffic Cameras
Red light cameras capture more than just a photo of you and your car when
you pass under their view. The information is cross indexed with even more
private information contained in the state's massive databases.
In the Savannah case, this private data was published on the Internet because the city web
server failed to implement the most basic security measures.
Unfortunately, those pictures and video, along with personal information,
was accessible to anyone who searched for them for a seven-month-long
period. All available just by searching for someone's name through Google.
Despite the massive error, the city maintains that its computer systems,
"currently have up-to-date security measures, devices, and software to
protect confidential information."
Thousands of miles away, photo enforcement vendor Affiliated Computer
Services is facing bribery charges involving attempts by ACS to land a
$90-million twenty-year no-bid contract to operate photo radar and red light
cameras for the city of Edmonton, Canada. Court documents suggest ACS
offered more than just technical services to the city's officials.
According to a letter
the City of Savannah issued to the 8800 victims, "At this point we
have no evidence that confidential information was read. downloaded or used
in any manner. No one has reported any problems to the City of Savannah, or
any other state or local authorities."
This statement offers little comfort to affected motorists who will have
to watch over their shoulders for the rest of their lives.
According to a recent court case in Florida, a person whose driver's
license information is exposed becomes a victim by the act of exposure even
before the information is used for unlawful purposes.
important victory for privacy rights, Florida's
11th Circuit Court of Appeals held that
individuals suing under the Drivers Privacy Protection Act can qualify to
receive monetary damages even if they did not suffer financial harm.
In that case, the court
ruled, "Damages for a violation of an individual's privacy are a
quintessential example of damages that are uncertain and possibly
unmeasurable. To us, the plain meaning of the statue is clear -- a
plaintiff need not prove actual damages to be awarded liquidated damages"
In a similar case, hundreds of
thousands of motorists in Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie and Broward
counties, Florida are due to receive a $50 million class-action settlement
with Fidelity Federal Bank & Trust of West Palm Beach.
The bank ran afoul of a
federal anti-stalking law, sparked by the 1989 murder of TV actress Rebecca
Schaeffer in California, that makes it illegal for companies to buy driver
records from state governments.
A group of attorneys who
specialize in cases involving privacy breaches is offering
free case evaluations
over the Internet.
If you believe your
personal information may have been breached by corporate or government
Click here for legal help and a free evaluation of your possible case