Privacy SOS

Norwood police have no Google Glass policy, despite piloting the tech

Image courtesy Loic Le Meur

On March 19, my office filed a public records request to the Norwood Police Department, seeking records about its use of Google Glass technology. A local reporter had tipped us off to the fact that a few police departments in Massachusetts were piloting Glass, and so we filed requests to find out about exactly how. We asked for the following information:

1. Internal policies;
2. Contracts or agreements pertaining to Google Glass, including but not limited to contracts or agreements with WiredBlue and/or Google; and
3. Any communications relating to or mentioning Google Glass, including internal emails.

This week, we received a response indicating that the only document pertaining to Google Glass in the possession of the Norwood Police Department is a two part email exchange about publicity related to its use.

Apparently the department has no policy governing its use of Google Glass. Nor, apparently, does the department have a policy governing the use of information derived from the technology, like surveillance video and audio recordings. According to the department, the Norwood police have no written agreement with either the contractor (WiredBlue) or with the manufacturer, Google.

All of that’s troubling, for obvious reasons.

Read the documents.

© 2021 ACLU of Massachusetts.