(Photo courtesy of American Civil Liberties Union of Washington)
The idea behind Record is simple enough: a blockchain-enabled network that stores body camera footage in order to ensure its transparent use. If anyone modifies or accesses the footage, it will be recorded in a publicly viewable ledger.
On Feb. 28, the team behind Record — a winning project at Blockchain for Social Impact Coalition’s 2017 hackathon in the category of “Identity & Vulnerable Populations” — is coming to Philly to talk about how the technology might increase trust levels between law enforcement and the communities it serves.
“The inspiration for Record was to create an IoT-enabled framework that empowers law enforcement to maintain the chain of custody of digital evidence and become more transparent while doing so; better enabling the communities that they police to hold them accountable when handling evidence,” say the creators of the project, which is still in the early stages of development.
The event is happening at WeWork’s Northern Liberties spot, as part of the Blockchain for Social Impact Philadelphia meetup.
(Related: Here are 10 blockchain resources in Philly.)
In October 2017, the City of Philadelphia signed a deal with Axon (the maker of the Taser) to outfit 4,000 Philadelphia Police Department patrol officers with body-worn cameras for $12.5 million.
In March last year, Philly’s City Council held an open hearing on body cameras, at which an array of experts on the subject chimed in. At the hearing, policy specialist and researcher Harlan Yu — principal at D.C. think-tank Upturn — said Philly’s handling of body camera footage had “room for improvement.”
“What we see here in Philly is that the cameras are tools for keeping officers accountable,” Yu told Technical.ly in March. “But the cameras won’t match those promises unless there are proper safeties in place.”
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