Israel shifts to digital surveillance of Palestinians
Israel is abandoning its longstanding tactic of raiding Palestinian homes for “intelligence mapping” in favour of digitised surveillance that includes a vast and sophisticated 20-year-old network of CCTV, ANPR, and IP cameras throughout the Old City in East Jerusalem (“Mabat 2000”), automated facial recognition-equipped checkpoints (provided by the domestic company AnyVision) between Israel and the occupied West Bank, and drone surveillance at Palestinian protests. The drones over weekly protests in the village of Qaddum reportedly talk, issuing orders to go home in Hebrew. In addition, in 2019, the Israeli Cyber Unit made 19,606 requests for content removal to social media companies; Palestinians in the West Bank and East Jerusalem are not Israeli citizens and therefore are not protected by the country’s data protection laws.
Writer: Sahar Amer
Publication: The New Arab
Publication date: 2021-07-07