President Obama’s Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is quietly activating a national license plate tracking system. It will be shared with law enforcement and allow officials to track citizens’ vehicles “from a variety of sources nationwide.”

The new system, called the “National License Plate Recognition Database,” is outlined in a PDF on the Federal Business Opportunities website.

The system will allow authorities to “to determine where and when the vehicle has traveled” by tracking “vehicle license plate numbers that pass through cameras or are voluntarily entered into the system from a variety of sources.”

Using their smartphones, DHS officials will be able to take photos of any license plate in the country and upload it to the database. They will then receive an instant alert if that plate is on the “hot list” containing “target vehicles.”

The intended purpose of the new system is to catch illegal immigrants and terrorists, but it is likely that the vast majority of targeted individuals will be American citizens. To many who are concerned about the scope and growth of government power, the system is reminiscent of George Orwell’s 1984 — especially since in recent years, the DHS has branded “liberty lovers” as possible terrorists.

The “National License Plate Recognition Database,” which will allow the DHS to capture and track license plates around the country, could very well open the floodgates to widespread abuses of power.

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Kristin Tate is a multi-media reporter for Breitbart News and BenSwann.com.Dedicated to fearless journalism, she regularly works on undercover stings with James O'Keefe to reveal government waste, abuse, and fraud.Tate was a Young Americans for Liberty (YAL) Chapter President and Founder. She will continue to fight tirelessly for individual liberty and free markets through new media. Visit Kristin's website at www.TheLibertarianChick.com.

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  • Kimber_TLE

    The intended purpose of the new system is to catch illegal immigrants and terrorists.

    Wait. Isn’t that the exact opposite of what the democrats are currently …

    OH! I get it! Obfuscation!

  • hookumsnivy

    You might want to update the PDF link. This definitely isn’t right: file:///home/chronos/user/Downloads/HSCECR-14-Q-00006-Final.pdf

  • Keith

    Only 1 state in the nation banned widespread use of this technology. That’s New Hampshire. So if you don’t like this, consider voting with your feet and joining us in New Hampshire. Live Free or Die! http://freestateproject.org/

    • Wicked

      I spend as much time as I can in New Hampshire, particularly not shooting my rifles which I don’t own.

  • http://www.infowars.com/ Ctrl-alt-del

    “The intended purpose of the new system….” is never what they claim it to be. Government lies. Police lie. The whole system lies against the people to get them to go along with their “reasonable and sensible” schemes. Slight of hand. Look over here while I work in secret on the opposite side.

    • Wicked

      I posted this in my own comment, however… DHS’ sole purpose is to find, identify, track, and harass ANYONE that opposes how the government conducts itself. (and the big corporations who tell them what to do)

      It’s continuity of corrupt government insurance. They don’t give a shit who wants to kill us.

  • Layla Godey

    Catch illegal immigrants (read that in context of the current debates over immigration). How will it catch terrorists-are they registering as terrorists?

  • Wicked

    DHS’ sole purpose is to find, identify, track, and harass ANYONE that opposes how the government conducts itself. (and the big corporations who tell them what to do)

    It’s continuity of corrupt government insurance. They don’t give a shit who wants to kill us. It would save them the hassle when shit hits the fan. One less person to oppress.

    The DHS, NSA, and other federal agencies can flip me over while I’m sleeping and suck farts from my ass, BTW.

    • PatrickHenry1789

      “Suck gas from my ass”. LMAO

  • Frank

    Why would they want to track illegal immigrants? So they can make offer them citizenship faster? Seriously, that’s the dumbest excuse to track someone. Why not simply ask the DMV where they are since many states are giving them valid driver’s licenses anyway.

  • Wicked

    Kristin Tate is hot too, BTW, in case you overlooked that.

    • http://www.infowars.com/ Ctrl-alt-del

      Why is it that Liberal/Democrat women are scowling hags? I find the more rabid liberal they are, the uglier and meaner they are. Thankfully women of our mindset are not that way. They’re pretty damn hot! If I were a single liberal male, I’d probably switch ideologies just so I could score a hottie!

  • BSC249

    “…could very well open the floodgates to widespread abuses of power.” Seriously Kristen? So our gov’t & politicians aren’t already engaged in ‘widespread abuses of power?’ As a so called reporter, I would expect something a little less broad ranged and a little more relevant to the story, but then again, this is typical of the generalizations that you write.

  • Wayne D.

    This isn’t that shocking, it was time, now that they have cameras up on all the highways to monitor traffic flow and road conditions. Of course it will be abused.What is more scary is the facial recognition software that can spot you in a crowded mall or walking down a sidewalk. Of course if you are not guilty of anything what do you have to worry about? This should rid the world of corrupt bankers, politicians and corporations, right?

  • CrazyAuntJane

    Welcome to the police states of America. Remember the family stopped because they knew he has a gun permit in another state. and had their car searched? Get used to it!!!
    And we know the Obamanation is worried about Illegals and Muslims!

  • http://www.joshuascottmccullough.com/ Josh McCullough

    Without probably cause? They can’t!

    • Keith

      They scan the license plate to find out if they have probable cause.

      • http://www.joshuascottmccullough.com/ Josh McCullough

        Ahhh. Thanks for explaining! :)

  • Gregory Alan of Johnson

    No contract, no authority or jurisdiction. Yes, I’m willing to be shot dead over this.

    • Keith

      You don’t have to take it that far. Just move to the 1 state where this doesn’t happen – New Hampshire. I don’t want freedom folks to die on this hill when it isn’t needed.

      • Gregory Alan of Johnson

        Thanks for the offer. It isn’t viable for me to do so. Our Lord wants me in Colorado. NH will eventually get there, as will all the municipal STATE OF’s. Since they are franchises of the main (UNITED STATES) muni-corp, and commerce is the “name of the game”, all of them will have to fall in line or end up with UN troops making them wish they had.

        • Keith

          There was a bill this year to repeal the 2007 ban on this that we passed in NH. The bill failed in the NH House 250 against to 97 in support. It never even made it to the NH Senate. With free staters continuing to move to NH, it isn’t too long before we start repealing the bad laws we have, The UN can kiss the sky for all I care.

  • mnh4

    This makes me glad I joined the Free State Project and moved to New Hampshire, apparently it’s the only state which prohibits this type of automatic tracking.

    • Keith

      That is correct. Though Boston recently made headlines for banning. There are likely a few additional cities here and there that also ban it.

  • ReecesQueen

    Who’s going to watch the watchers. Set up!

  • OffStar Prototyper

    I worked on a prototype for what became OnStar. I left the company because of concerns that it would be misused because it can track you, turn on the phone while making it appear to be off and bug you through the handsfree system, etc.

    Be careful what you invent. Someone may actually use it.

  • Michael Norton

    The DHS is the first federal government department that will be abolished after the complete and total economic collapse.

    • sharonhansen209

      I would hope so.

  • Draken

    “President Obama’s Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is quietly activating a national license plate tracking system.”

    No… Try again. The documentation in question is a solicitation for bids to BUILD the system. There is no ‘quietly activate’ going on here. The system doesn’t exist, there is nothing to activate.

    I’ll be the first to say that this is concerning, but at the same time drop the sensationalism it isn’t necessary.

  • Phil Gwinn

    Amazingly enough, I would not oppose this if it were simply another public surveillance tool used by legitimate law enforcement agencies. After all a car is out in public and in view by everyone and anyone.

    But, if they build it, they (the abusive, read IRS/NSA/CONGRESS) THEY WILL COME.

    Kinda like a Communist Utopia, it only looks good on paper in a perfect world.

  • gotwww

    The police department I worked at 15 years ago was already doing this at a county wide level (Oakland County, Michigan) – basically any officer that entered your plate number in their mobile terminal got a complete history of every date, time and place your plate had been run by any other agency in the county.

  • Tom B

    It sad Americans are being tracked like cattle.We have a sick government that needs a massive class action lawsuit!

    • sharonhansen209

      Problem with that is that they will make us pay their damages if we win or lose.

  • BettyWhite0321

    Yes, the illegals must be hunted down at any cost, pulled over, and registered as Democrats.

  • David Zuniga

    The U.S. Constitution is the highest law in America, and all public servants are sworn to obey and defend it. In fact, they have serially violated the law for over 150 years. As the SCOTUS ruled in its 1928 Olmstead case,

    “Our government is the potent, the omnipresent teacher. For good or for ill, it
    teaches the whole people by its example. Crime is contagious. If the government becomes a lawbreaker, it breeds contempt for law…”.

    AmericaAgain! is a start-up perpetual charitable trust and membership organization featuring the AmericaAgain! Indictment Engine(TM): the People’s first enforcement mechanism for the U.S. Constitution. Elections and political lobbying will not touch the cartels’ rule over our servants in government, just as elections can’t touch the cartels in Mexico, Russia, Italy, or anywhere else.

    Politics is bread and circuses unfit for the 21st century. The Internet is history’s most devastating tactical force-massing weapon — for those with the tactical wisdom to use it.

    Watch our 2 minute video on the AmericaAgain! home page, then read our FAQ page and learn what We The People can do today, without Washington D.C.’s consent or approval. THAT is how you break the cartels. JOIN US!


    • Draken

      Point of Order. The quote you listed is from Justice Brandeis’s dissenting opinion. Therefor the SCOUTS never ‘ruled’ what you are quoting to be true, the quote is merely dictum.

      • David Zuniga

        You are perfectly correct, my pedantic anonymous friend, but: a) I presume you meant SCOTUS rather than SCOUTS, as I meant ‘wrote’ rather than ‘ruled’; b) yours is not technically a point of order; and c) changing that one word does not affect my point in the least.

        • Draken

          Thank you for correcting me on my last post – that’s what I get for posting on 3 hours of sleep.

          That said, if you misquote a statement of the SCOTUS and say that the majority ‘ruled’ in in reality it was the dissent who wrote, that would be a point of order as you are mischaracterized the ruling. Best use of ‘point of order?’ no I’ll give you that. I should have used different language, but it was effective as you did come back to clarify your statement, thank you for that.

          As for your statement, for a lay person ‘ruled’ versus ‘wrote’ makes no difference. For anyone who has read the option it makes it seem as thought you don’t understand the issues presented in that case and their importance in current privacy law. I took issue with ‘ruled’ because that one word changed the entire outcome of the case.

          If the SCOTUS had held what Justice Brandeis had wrote much of the problems that we have today with warrantless wiretaps might not of come to pass. Instead in Olmstead the Court held that no warrant was required to listen in on phone conversations.

          By law federal agencies need a warrant, but not by the Constitution – thanks to Olmstead. This didn’t change until Katz v. US forty years later and the reasonable expectations test outlined by the concurring Justice Harlan (later adopted by the majority of the Court in Smith v. Maryland).

          The point is that your choice of that one word, if true, would rewrite 90 years of Juris Prudence, and an untold number of cases and policies.

          So no, that one word doesn’t mean much to those who have not studied the topic. But for someone who has, that one word changes the entire outcome.

          In a final note, there is no privacy on the internet, it is all an illusion. I might not post under my given name, but that does not mean that I have any assurances of privacy. Funny enough you can thank the majority opinion of Olmstead for that.

          • David Zuniga

            Certainly; point well taken. The statement, very much in the manner of a dictum in any case, was moral rather than legal. Thus my response to you was to suggest that whether a majority opinion or dissent, the dictum hits home. Thanks.
            Sent from my Sprint phone.

            —– Reply message —–

  • LetsTryLibertyAgain

    I for one welcome our artificially intelligent camera equipped overlords.

    Just another in a very long, seemingly nonstop series of abuses of our liberty and privacy, all to save us from terrorists and illegal immigrants. Please protect us from these bogeymen oh mighty Big Government.

    Give this ten years and there will be networked cameras on every street corner and all along the interstate highways. You won’t need a cell phone or OnStar to track you everywhere you drive. Our positions will be updated in realtime.

    The shepherds need to keep a watchful eye on their flock. It makes them much easier to fleece.

  • AnonyÓðinn


    Having heard about the program mentioned here for a very long time — this sort of program and the “authorizations” claimed to support it actually date back to mid-2012 if not before ( reference: privacysos.org/node/641 ), I have to say, that we have been enduring this kind of thing for far too long. Why do we need to keep appealing to “authorities” when rights can be exercised and defended in large-scale communities via distributed systems? Why should what we consider “currencies” and the development of a social good be predicated upon coercion and use of force which is funded every time you buy an orange, a gallon of milk, or anything?

    You indeed have the ability to change this system, but you are going to have to step up and do it.

    I have been philosophizing, visioning, and developing partnerships for around a year or so to develop what I feel is a reasonable alternative to our current system. It’s up to us whether or not we are going to change it, but we sure can’t go full speed ahead on our current course. For more information on a system which would remove barriers to giving and allow free-thinking people to act using distributed consensus mechanisms in a manner that allows you much greater choice over what happens to your resources (while maximizing giving that everyone can do), please see our recent release at:


    This website currently points and redirects to:


    Thanks for checking it out. Cheers and have a good rest of the weekend.

  • djnorl

    According to WP post, they have dropped this one …


    Adverse reactions to their design on intrusion seems to have worked, at least on the surface.