ATS Leaves Building Unlocked, Open

March 21, 2010

A corporate security breach at American Traffic Solutions was uncovered by CameraFRAUD volunteers Saturday night. The photo radar ticket processing facility, located in the Phoenix-suburb of Ahwatukee, was left unlocked and unattended.

Numerous bundles of network cables were spotted throughout the building, potentially allowing anyone with a laptop to access internal systems containing vital “chain of evidence” data. A dozen trashcans full of unshredded documents were spotted, possibly containing  sensitive data on their “customers:” so-called “violators” who are accused of triggering the automated ticketing machines.

In addition, a strange childlike drawing was left on one wall, apparently detailing the flow of money involving notices of violation, Hertz rent-a-car (an ATS partner in toll road technology), and local police departments. While the crudely-drawn stick figures don’t mention safety, it’s clear the corporate hieroglyphics were used to emphasize revenue and money.

ATS has a history of leaving important things unlocked. A year ago in March 2009, CameraFRAUD discovered automated ticketing boxes at intersections left unlocked and open. ATS responded by installing cameras to —yes— watch the cameras at certain locations in Mesa.

In case you’re wondering why it looks like they’re leaving the building, ATS is downsizing to a smaller processing center on nearby Southern Avenue. Industry sources report plummeting toll road revenue, as well as a sharp increase in resistance to the company’s products and services. Litigation, class-action lawsuits, and canceled contracts nationwide are just the beginning.


Kansas City Robbery Botched

October 30, 2009

radar robbery

Artists's rendition of a recent 1.7 million dollar heist. Suspects may be armed and up for re-election.

Stupid Criminals – Municipal authorities in Kansas City, MO have failed at a recent robbery attempt.

The city officials used red light cameras to extort over 1.7 million dollars out of their constituent’s pockets. The cost to install the cameras? 1.7 million dollars.

“The city expected more revenue,” said KMBC reporter Micheal Mahoney. “The program that was designed to make money for the city may end up costing [them] money.”

Proving there’s no honor among thieves, scam cam vendor American Traffic Solutions has pocketed most of the dough:

The city budget director, Troy Schulte, said that most of the income from the fines are going to the vendor, American Traffic Solutions.

No charges have been filed against Kansas City by Kansas City in the failed robbery, although over 3,000 people have decided to fight back by requesting a hearing. The unexpected battle took the attackers off-guard:

There are 3,000 cases waiting to be heard at the (Kansas City) Municipal Court, which means the (Kansas City) police need overtime workers to re-examine the red-light pictures.

Other recent failed ticketing robberies include beleaguered Redflex Group’s statewide Arizona effort.


Redflex Investors Call AZ Program “Failure”

October 18, 2009

postitRedflex’s statewide “photo enforcement” program in Arizona is being called an expensive failure by the beleaguered firm’s own investors.

Apparently, these photographic pirates are upset that the “take” from their heist wasn’t what they were expecting:

“Hunter Hall has concluded that, so far, the ‘Arizona statewide’ program has been an expensive failure. We attribute responsibility for this outcome to a board that we believe is ill-equipped to handle contracts of such significance.”

The backlash against automated ticketing in Arizona, including a proposed statewide ballot initiative outlawing the cameras, now threatens the Australian firm’s 11 other lucrative contracts with municipalities throughout Arizona.


Liberty vs. Michael Bloomberg

October 14, 2009

nevermindLiberty: “…a condition in which an individual has the right to act according to his or her own will,” or “freedom from arbitrary or despotic government or control.

NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg: “We live in a world where we have to have a balance. We can’t just say everybody can go everyplace and do anything they want.

From the New York Times:

A network of private and public surveillance cameras, license plate readers and weapons sensors already established in Lower Manhattan as an electronic bulwark against terrorist attacks will soon expand to a large patch of Midtown Manhattan, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly said Sunday as they announced the allocation of $24 million in Homeland Security grants toward the effort.

…Like the system downtown, the expanded surveillance network would feed streams of data for analysis to a coordination center… Behind the mayor, a 40-foot video wall displayed maps, incoming data from a police precinct and more than a dozen video streams, many of them showing tourists taking photographs on a sunny day.


Redflex Driver Crosses Gore, Runs Stop Sign

September 13, 2009

What, me signal?

What, me signal?

A driver for beleaguered Redflex Group found himself at the other end of the camera this past Thursday when a motorist videotaped him committing multiple moving violations on the Loop 101 westbound near 35th Avenue.

The video, uploaded to YouTube, clearly shows the employee dart across a gore area to avoid missing the 35th Avenue exit. Failure to signal is then the name of the game (twice), an unsafe lane change, followed by a fun little round of stop sign roulette.

For your viewing convenience, we have deep linked to each incident in this handy virtual “ticket” we’ve written for the driver:

9/10/2009 – 9:30 AM – Loop 101 near 35th Ave
VIOLATION A:
28-644 A2, Crossing of Gore Area (Video | Statute)
VIOLATION B: 28-755, Failure to Signal Lane Change (Video | Statute)
VIOLATION C: 28-755, Failure to Signal Lane Change (Video | Statute)
VIOLATION D: 28-644 A1, Unsafe Lane Change (Video | Statute)
VIOLATION E: 28-644 A1 , Failure to Obey Stop Sign (Video | Statute)

If cited for each offense, the employee could have racked up over 11 points against his license (Gore area: 3; failure to signal: 2; failure to signal: 2; unsafe lane change: 2;  ignore stop sign: 2.).

In Arizona, drivers can lose their license or be ordered to “traffic survival school”  if 8 or more points are accrued.

CameraFRAUD is requesting a formal investigation into the matter.


Reckless D.C. Mayor Endangers Streets of Nation’s Capital

June 7, 2009

Reckless Mayor Caught on Camera

Click to enlarge the "evidence" provided by ATS

Last month, the reckless mayor of the District of Columbia hurtled down East Capitol Street in North East Washington at the breakneck speed of 43 MPH — a full 13 miles per hour in excess of the speed limit. Fortunately, scofflaw Adrian M. Fenty’s vehicular rampage was stopped dead in its tracks two weeks and four days later when a ticket was finally dropped in the U.S. mail.

American Traffic Systems (ATS) had issued the demand for the immediate payment of $50 to the “DC DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS,” the registered owner of the tiny taxpayer-funded Smart car. As one can see from the photographs taken by the ATS machine, Mayor Fenty was driving without due care and attention by straddling a second lane without any apparent use of a turn signal — just the sort of thing for which ATS plans to begin issuing tickets as part of the public-private partnership to boost revenue with “secondary violations.”

Now, we don’t actually think Fenty’s driving in this case endangered anyone. Driving 43 MPH on a six-lane boulevard on a clear day in light traffic is what the safe and reasonable majority of drivers do. By underposting speed limits and criminalizing ordinary conduct, the District has been able to profit from more than 3,732,234 photo tickets issued since 1999 worth about $280 million. The difference in this particular case is that Fenty is a hypocrite. The photographic money machine can only keep flashing if mayors like Fenty demonize motorists who are not endangering anyone. The other difference is that when we do that, we get the ticket and we have to pay it.

Attention Maryland High School Students: This is the mayor's plate

Attention Maryland High School Students: This is the mayor's plate

In Fenty’s case, the cost of the car, the gas, and the tickets are all paid by the taxpayer. In fact, you would never have known about this incident had the Washington City Paper not known that the mayor and his personal assistant frequently drive the black and gray Smart car with license plate CV-6154. Reporter Mike DeBonis ran that plate through the online database and caught the May 11 incident before it was erased from the system.

Now that Fenty has been caught, a city spokesman told the City Paper, “He’ll pay the ticket.”

What do you want to bet that would be the first time he’s ever paid with his own money? Next time, he’ll probably just take the motorcade.


A Slippery Slope…

January 29, 2009

Months ago when the state’s photo traffic enforcement program started, those who cared about their civil liberties objected loudly. Their argument was that the cameras represented a “slippery slope” that would lead us to the surveillance state, and we would lose our right to move freely about our own state and country without being monitored by Big Brother’s taxing cameras.

Well, you know what they say about karma:

Scamera Van on a Slippery Slope

Scamera Van on a Slippery Slope

Redflex is encountering slippery slopes of its own!

This is on the Westbound i10 approaching 43rd Ave. I would love to have stopped and investigate the matter, but I was on my way to work when I saw this. My guess is that the operator of the “Tali-van” tried to set up his little money machine on the berm, but was countered by the realities of gravity. Faced with ditching his vehicle and quarter million dollar camera onto the side of the freeway, he probably locked up his brakes and called for help.

DPS was on hand, at the bidding of their Redflex masters no doubt, to protect the quarter million dollar camera inside the van.

Oh, and for public safety.

Not so much for the driver though, I imagine he’s been replaced already.


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