Closing the Spycam Sniffer Loophole

Tuesday, 23 April 2002, 2:13 AM EST

You are browsing the Web when a pop-up ad appears advertising a COLOR video camera. IT'S FUN screams the ad -- for less than $200 you can set up a network of cameras throughout the house, the office, or other places, which will transmit video images from a wireless, self powered miniature camera either to a central receiver, or even through that receiver to the Internet.

Video surveillance itself raises a series of questions: what is the appropriate role of surveillance; should parents be spying on children or nannies; should employers be spying on employees; are there any reasonable expectations of privacy invaded by the use of these tiny cameras? However, when wireless technologies are added to the mix, a new legal, moral and ethical question is raised: what happens when the camera you've set up is intercepted by an third party?

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