ANPR was invented to ‘combat terrorism’ but is now used to enforce the most minor of road traffic offenses; the whole system is 100% reliant on the number plate being the correct.
The question of “why would a criminal use the correct number plate on their car?” leaps to mind.
The police are already aware of the problem and the Superintendent John Wake at ACPO’s Vehicle Crime Intelligence Service recently stated “I don’t have confidence that beyond that you can identify that that vehicle is the legitimate vehicle for that plate”.
According to the DVLA & Police more than 40,000 sets of number plates were stolen in 2006, a rise of almost 25%. Because of this ACPO wants tamper proof plates and a central number plate issuing deparment. The DVLA is currently considering requiring all forcing all motorcycles (1.3 million) to be fitted with plates featuring electronic tags, which have been tested around the UK.
A car can be cloned, simply by stealing the plate of a similar car, and putting it on another car. This way when the “suspect” car goes through a speed camera, congestion point, or ANPR camera, the lawful owner of the cloned car ,who has done nothing wrong, will get a ticket, automatically, and will have great difficulty in proving they are innocent,. The innocent party will be required to prove they are innocent.
The Met Police think that the cloning has increased because of the amount of camera based detection of “offences”. Metropolitan Police Federation chairman Glen Smyth said the ‘problem has grown because of the amount of camera-based enforcement of traffic offences, which relies on computer records on who owns which car’.
This means that ANPR was invented to combat terrorism, it was then used to ‘combat’ the scourge of no road tax, but this then created a new breed of offences, so we are now creating new laws and new technology to resolve the issue of car cloning.