Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 internet speed test! ×

Submission + - Police use cell tower logs to contact potential witnesses to unsolved murder (www.cbc.ca)

itamblyn writes: It what appears to be the first example of a new approach in investigative policing, Ontario Provincial Police are using cell phone tower logs to reach out to potential witnesses in an unsolved homicide case from 2015.

CBC reports (http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/frederick-john-hatch-homicide-cellphone-texts-1.3821821) that police "will be sending texts to about 7,500 people on Thursday to ask for information" to individuals that were, according to the cell phone tower logs, within the tower area near the time of the incident.

While we have heard lots of stories about cell phone tower logs being used in policing before (they are even discussed at length in Season 1 of Serial), I think this is the first case where they have been used to actively contact potential witnesses.

A news release by the police states that the texts will ask the recipient to "voluntarily answer a few simple questions to possibly help the Ontario Provincial Police solve this murder". CBC reports that "Investigators will also consider calling the numbers of people who don't respond voluntarily, but they would be required to obtain another court order to do so."

On one hand, this seems like the natural progression from the traditional approach of canvassing local residents by putting up flyers and knocking on doors. Indeed, the investigators use the term "digital canvas" to describe their plan.

On the other hand, I think one can reasonably ask — Are we OK with this approach? For example, presumably, it would be possible to get a better view of who was in the area by checking credit card transaction logs for all stores within the area. License plate readers and speed cameras might also give information about which vehicles were in the area. There are many levels of tracking that could be used simultaneously as a means of generating lists. The question is, do we want this to happen whenever there is a major crime? A minor one? Maybe this is just how things work now, and it really is no different than walking around, knocking on doors. I figured it was worth a discussion at the very least.

Submission + - Is MS cheating on its own HTML 5 test? 1

itamblyn writes: I just upgraded to the IE 9 RC and decided to see how it did on HTML 5 speed tests compared to the most recent dev channel build of Chrome (11.0.672.2). The result was more than x3 faster performance by IE (using a test created by MS in fairness). Interestingly though, the images and text were somewhat blurry, as if it wasn't being rendered at the full resolution of the window. Is this "legal"? Is Chrome losing because it's not cutting corners, or is this trick fair game and Chrome should be doing it as well. If you have a windows machine, you can do the comparison yourself here: http://ie.microsoft.com/testdrive/Performance/SpeedReading/default.html

Submission + - Small island hints at big problem (bbc.co.uk)

itamblyn writes: "BBC is reporting that a small island South of Bangladesh has "disappeared" — underwater. Rising sea levels have solved a longstanding territorial dispute between India and Bangladesh, but hint at a larger issue that would seem to extend beyond just these two countries' interests. Hopefully everyone brought rubber boots to work today."

Slashdot Top Deals

May Euell Gibbons eat your only copy of the manual!

Working...