As the Big Game rapidly approaches, conversations surrounding Super Bowl security have reached a fever pitch. We’ve compiled some highlights of security preparations in the area (some of which are pretty wild), with a few other news stories thrown in for the non-sports fans.
Super Bowl Security Makes Gridiron Seem Like War Zone
Over 4,000 New Jersey state officers, plus agents from the FBI, NYPD, NJ Transit Police, Port Authority Police, and more, along with airport-style security screenings are just the most obvious layer of security being implemented for this year’s Super Bowl. Security procedures for the event have gone on for weeks, with the protected area extending for miles in all directions on every form of public transportation, which included a total lockdown on January 27th to check every vehicle with cutting-edge counter-surveillance.
In addition to the human security element, from Jan. 21-25 officials deployed low-flying helicopters carrying special radiation sensors to establish baseline levels of radiation in the area. The helicopters covered the 10 square miles of ground between New York and New Jersey.
With ticket prices standing somewhere in the $1500 range, attendees should expect a certain level of security. Still, one would be advised to look out for enhanced interrogation techniques on the way to get nachos.
Read more at New Jersey 101.5
200 Temporary Security Cameras Supplement Thousands More in NY
The NYPD has installed 200 extra security cameras around Midtown Manhattan to increase anti- terrorism security for the week leading up to the Super Bowl. Drawing on experience with other large-crowd events, police are developing the assets of the NYPD’s “Domain Awareness System,” which includes between 3,500 and 6,000 cameras as well as analytical software, to create the most expansive security surveillance net possible.
Read more at The Verge
Analytics to Play Big Role in Super Bowl Security
With all surveillance and data gathering going on before and during the sporting event to help protect the Super Bowl, security officials have also implemented advanced analytics to pore over data to assess potential threats. They are using the Haystax Public Safety Cloud to collect, combine, and analyze huge amounts of “data feeds from cameras, RFID and GPS systems, social media, and radiological monitors.” The security teams are also using special software to monitor camera feeds in real time looking for suspicious activity such as a bag left unattended. The system applies algorithmic review to pull together data, identify incidents that matter and might be connected, and alert security personnel.
Read more at GCN
London Cops Catch Thief with Invisible Ink
Last November, a British man broke into a rigged “trap house” and stole several items. He was also sprayed with an invisible liquid when he tripped multiple silent alarms. Police served a warrant for him and identified residue on his clothing from the spray. This arrest is one of many that have come out of a pilot program currently operating in areas throughout England. The combination of CCTV footage and invisible, difficult-to-remove ink makes identifying criminals much easier.
Read more at the London Evening Standard
Scientists use Mini GPS to Track Bees
After years of preparation, scientists are ready to release 5,000 honeybees outfitted with tiny GPS radio transmitters into a valley in Tasmania. With bee populations in decline in the Northern Hemisphere, a threat to countless ecosystems, scientists are eager to learn more about Colony Collapse Disorder. This groundbreaking experiment should shed a great deal of light on the subject. Two of the four hives from which the 5,000 bees were drawn were dosed with a pesticide believed to contribute to the disorder, giving scientists unparalleled insight into bee movement and providing the foundation for future experiments on a range of other essential insects.
Read more at the Courier Mail
Passwords at Risk on Starbucks WiFi
The Starbucks mobile app was quickly patched recently to provide, what the company claims, a fix for a bug that opened customer data including usernames and passwords to hackers. The problem resulted from storing users’ passwords in plaintext form within the app; this made it simple for anyone who got his or her hands on a phone with the Starbucks app to break in and obtain sensitive user information. Many people use the same username and password across an abundance of services, making this security breach potentially very detrimental.
Read more at Technewsworld
Bird Steals Hidden Camera in Egg, Awesome Penguin Footage Ensues
BBC wildlife videographer John Dowder hid a camera inside a penguin egg attempting to capture footage of the flightless birds. A striated Caracara nabbed the egg after inspecting it, realizing no penguins were protecting it, and took it for a flight. The footage that follows stretches across the entire penguin colony, captured before the Caracara dropped the egg, only to be inspected by some vultures and then some penguins.
Read more at Gizmodo