Business is booming for the surveillance state

Surveillance companies like Axon hope to turn every law enforcement officer into a data-gathering drone for a bodycam surveillance database they privately control. Now ShotSpotter, a listening technology that triangulates gunfire in "urban, high-crime areas," announced a planned IPO.

Above: ShotSpotter mobile app integrated with Google data, showing Oakland California.

They are also expanding from "urban" neighborhoods to a college campus near you. From the submission:

Our solutions consist of our highly-specialized, cloud-based software integrated with our proprietary, internet-enabled sensors and communication networks. When a potential gunfire incident is detected by our sensors, our software analyzes and validates the data and precisely locates where the incident occurred. An alert containing a location on a map and critical information about the incident is transmitted directly to law enforcement or security personnel through any internet-connected computer and to iPhone® or Android mobile devices.

For gunshots occurring outdoors, our software transmits the validated sensor data along with a recorded digital file of the triggering sound to our Incident Review Center, or IRC, where our trained acoustic experts are on duty 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year to screen and confirm actual gunfire incidents. Our acoustic experts can supplement alerts with additional tactical information, such as the potential presence of multiple shooters or the use of high-capacity weapons. For outdoor gunshot incidents reviewed by our IRC, alerts are typically sent within 45 seconds of the gunfire incident. For gunshots occurring indoors, our solutions are designed to automatically alert security personnel within ten seconds.

We generate annual subscription revenues from the deployment of our public safety solution on a per-square-mile basis. As of March 31, 2017, we had 74 public safety customers with coverage areas of approximately 450 square miles in 89 cities and municipalities across the United States, including four of the ten largest cities. We also sell two security solutions, SST SecureCampus and ShotSpotter SiteSecure, which are typically sold on a subscription basis, each with a customized deployment plan. As of March 31, 2017, we had six security customers covering seven higher-education campuses, of which five had their solutions deployed.

While improving public safety and reducing gun crime are always commendable goals, privatizing the means of doing so is a very slippery slope for those of us with concerns about how Big Data and privatized surveillance continue to merge.

ShotSpotter Seeks To Raise $35 Million In IPO (Seeking Alpha)

Images: ShotSpotter Campus and website