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Miami cops enter false data into Waze as revenge for revealing locations
Waze is a pretty handy tool for drivers, allowing users to share information about traffic accidents, road closures, and even cops lurking behind billboards with speed cameras. It is the latter which caused a bit of a stir a few weeks ago, when Sheriff Mike Brown of Bedford County, speaking at the National Sheriffs’ Association meeting, called for the police reporting feature to be removed.
After polite requests for Google to remove the feature, it seems that Miami police officers have chosen to take the law into their own hands. Hundreds of offices have signed up to the service and flooded it with false data to enact some small vengeance on Waze, according to a report from NBC 6 in Miami. The aim seems to be to pollute accurately reported data with misinformation about police locations and other reports.
Some officials have been concerned that making police locations publicly available puts law enforcers and the public at additional risk, be it from targeted attacks or by criminals more easily circumventing efforts to clamp down on crime. However, this view isn’t shared by all law enforcers. Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel suggests that that serious criminals don’t rely on Waze.
“If someone is suffering mental illness and they want to commit a heinous crime or hunt a deputy or a police officer; they don’t need Waze to do that,” – Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel
Waze does not appear too concerned about the possible risks, instead the company believes that the service helps act as a deterrent by highlighting any local police presence.
“Police partners support Waze and its features, including reports of police presence, because most users tend to drive more carefully when they believe law enforcement is nearby.”-Waze
Whether or not you view Waze’s feature as useful or irresponsible, surely there are better ways to resolve this contentious issue than by wasting time entering false data? Where do you stand on Waze vs the police?