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Free Expression

ABC News: Law Enforcement Wants Waze App Disabled

CDT’s President and CEO, Nuala O’Connor, provides commentary for Eileen Sullivan of ABC News’ latest article regarding the concern that the popular Waze mobile traffic app can also be used to hunt and harm police.

Waze is a combination of GPS navigation and social networking. Fifty million users turn to the free service for warnings about nearby congestion, car accidents, speed traps, traffic cameras, construction zones, potholes, stalled vehicles or unsafe weather conditions. Waze users mark police working in public spaces on maps, which then allows other users to see a police icon. To some on law enforcement, this feature amounts to a stalking app for people who want to harm police and therefore, they want Google to disable that feature.

Nuala O’Connor, head of the Center for Democracy and Technology, said it would not be appropriate for Google to disable the police-reporting feature. “I do not think it is legitimate to ask a person-to-person communication to cease simply because it reports on publicly visible law enforcement,” she said.

Read the full article here.