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Posted: 1/21/2006 3:35:12 PM EDT
Less than ONE percent successful? Wow, lets just pretend it works while the invasion continues

This Country's Taxpaying Citizens are being screwed six ways to sunday...........

Border sensors send alerts about trains and animals but rarely catch people

Mike Madden
Republic Washington Bureau
Jan. 20, 2006 06:32 PM
www.azcentral.com/news/articles/0120border-sensors-ON.html
WASHINGTON - U.S. Border Patrol agents are forced to waste time responding to alerts from sensors tripped by animals and passing trains instead of the illegal border crossers and drug smugglers they are designed to catch, a government audit says.

Less than 1 percent of the alerts lead to arrests, but officials maintain the technology still has value.

"Despite claims that (the Integrated Surveillance Intelligence System) prevents (Office of Border Patrol) agents from having to respond to false alarms, the analysis indicates that OBP agents are spending many hours investigating legitimate activities, primarily because sensors cannot differentiate between illegal activity and legitimate events," according to the report by the Department of Homeland Security's Office of Inspector General.

The government has spent more than $429 million since 1997 on technology systems designed to help secure the border, and Homeland Security officials are preparing to solicit bids from private contractors sometime this year for a new, $2.5 billionsystem.

A spokesman for U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the agency that oversees the Border Patrol, did not return a call for comment on the audit.

In a response attached to the audit, the agency's acting commissioner, Deborah Spero, said the Bush administration agreed with the report's recommendation to find ways to measure how the technology helps agents. But officials objected to its "negative" tone.

Critics outside government and several internal reports have raised questions about how the money for technology has been spent and whether all the equipment works the way it is supposed to. A study last year found incomplete installation, shoddy equipment, poor management and inflated costs for installing cameras along the Southwest border

In the audit, released in mid-December, investigators looked at every alert generated by remote sensors, cameras and observation by people during five, 24-hour periods last April and May in three Border Patrol sectors in the Southwest: Tucson and El Paso and Laredo, Texas, and three along the Canadian border.

The sensors, which are hidden or buried along major smuggling routes near the border, detect seismic vibrations triggered when something passes by. They cost $3,500 each. Remote cameras, which can scan the area near sensors, aren't set up to automatically look at a sensor that sets off an alert, so Border Patrol technicians must point cameras at them manually.

On the Mexican border, sensors sounded 29,710 alerts, one every 44 seconds, on average. Agents couldn't even determine what caused the alerts 62 percent of the time, either because technicians didn't pass information on to a field agent fast enough, because no agent was available to investigate it or because it took agents too long to reach the sensor. With sensors deployed in remote locations in the desert, response times can vary depending on how far away the nearest Border Patrol station is.

Of the incidents agents investigated, 90 percent were caused by something other than illegal activity, like a passing car, a train or an animal. Only 252 incidents, less than 1 percent of all the sensor alerts, led agents to apprehend people crossing the border illegally.

Auditors said it was possible some of the alerts agents couldn't investigate were triggered by illegal activity. But, they said, that was unlikely because of the high rate of false alarms in cases with known causes.

The results on the Canadian border weren't much better, with false alarms generating 92 percent of the 2,077 alerts by sensors.

In the Southwest, cameras performed better, with 57 percent of the 155 incidents captured on video in the Southwest leading to apprehensions, and only 1 percent turning out to be a false alarm. Likewise, of the 780 observations by people, whether vehicle stops, aerial observation, Border Patrol surveillance or citizen tips, 49 percent led to apprehensions, though 40 percent were false alarms.

Homeland Security officials say the technology helps secure the border by pointing agents to trouble spots, letting the Border Patrol cover more ground with fewer people. But the report said agents and technicians should be added to respond to computerized alerts.

Investigators also found that there wasn't any way to judge whether the sensors make the Border Patrol more effective, and recommended that officials develop standards to evaluate the system.

"Sensors have always been just one arrow in the quiver, one tool that the Border Patrol has," said Rep. Jim Kolbe, R-Ariz., whose Tucson district runs along the border. "It's still a tool that helps. If it actually hinders, we better look fairly seriously at it."

Border Patrol agents get used to chasing down false leads as part of the job, said T.J. Bonner, president of the National Border Patrol Council, the union representing about 10,000 agents in the field. Bonner said he once was sent to investigate alerts triggered by a sensor placed on a railroad track in the desert, which contracted at night when temperatures plunged, rattling the sensor as if something had moved nearby.

The technology can be useful, but shouldn't be relied on too heavily, he said.

"You know that something's moving around there - it could be a cow, it could be a coyote - not the two-legged variety - or it could be people," Bonner said. "We're not Luddites, by any stretch of the imagination, but by the same token we recognize that it takes a human being to catch a human being."

Security technology experts said no piece of equipment, on its own, will stop illegal immigration.

"You can't just throw technology at a problem," said James Carafano, senior fellow for national security and homeland security at the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank in Washington, D.C.

"There is no silver bullet, there is no one single thing that you're going to do on the border in terms of technology that is going to solve your problems."
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 3:38:57 PM EDT
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 3:41:41 PM EDT

Originally Posted By HeavyMetal:
Theny need to find who maintains the seismic security perimeter around the Tonapah Test Range (Area 51) and hire them. It works......



And that is exactly why they won't do that........It would cut into cocaine\meth\pot importation
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 3:47:56 PM EDT
I am pretty sure that the sensors are more than 1% effective.
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 3:53:06 PM EDT

Originally Posted By double_wielder:
I am pretty sure that the sensors are more than 1% effective.




Of the incidents agents investigated, 90 percent were caused by something other than illegal activity, like a passing car, a train or an animal. Only 252 incidents, less than 1 percent of all the sensor alerts, led agents to apprehend people crossing the border illegally.


Dunno, it doesn't sound like a workable solution to me
Link Posted: 1/22/2006 4:11:40 PM EDT

Originally Posted By 22bad:

Originally Posted By double_wielder:
I am pretty sure that the sensors are more than 1% effective.




Of the incidents agents investigated, 90 percent were caused by something other than illegal activity, like a passing car, a train or an animal. Only 252 incidents, less than 1 percent of all the sensor alerts, led agents to apprehend people crossing the border illegally.


Dunno, it doesn't sound like a workable solution to me



This is a bunk study, I would really like to see the "sample" they used. Take any media report with a grain of salt, it's almost always biased to say the least.
Link Posted: 1/22/2006 4:14:20 PM EDT
"Security technology experts said no piece of equipment, on its own, will stop illegal immigration."


claymores? maybe... just a thought..


Link Posted: 1/22/2006 4:29:16 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Rincon_11:

Originally Posted By 22bad:

Originally Posted By double_wielder:
I am pretty sure that the sensors are more than 1% effective.




Of the incidents agents investigated, 90 percent were caused by something other than illegal activity, like a passing car, a train or an animal. Only 252 incidents, less than 1 percent of all the sensor alerts, led agents to apprehend people crossing the border illegally.


Dunno, it doesn't sound like a workable solution to me



This is a bunk study, I would really like to see the "sample" they used. Take any media report with a grain of salt, it's almost always biased to say the least.



I agree that the media is full of lying leftist liberals and biased to the extreme........

But, didn't the Minutemen observers DRAMATICALLY increase the BP apprehension numbers
most likely because the human beings were MUCH more accurate than the sensors?
Link Posted: 1/22/2006 4:30:06 PM EDT

Originally Posted By cluster:
"Security technology experts said no piece of equipment, on its own, will stop illegal immigration."


claymores? maybe... just a thought..



Naaaa............Minutemen with Claymores
Link Posted: 1/22/2006 11:04:11 PM EDT
How you can make a sensor sensitive enough to pick up people walking in the area, and not have it pickup large animals in the area or small animals close, or the Southern Pacific RR freight trains a few miles away is beyond me. Toss in trucks on nearby roads in many areas and you will have detections that count to the total but aren't what you are looking for. I don't think I saw the numbers annotated that way.
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 12:21:42 AM EDT
Minefields tend to stop people pretty well...
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 1:10:03 AM EDT

Originally Posted By MurdockTheCrazy:
Minefields tend to stop people pretty well...



Yeah, but the first time some kid got hurt/killed the media would be on it like hawks, broadcasting it 24/7 and putting a dozen different varieties of liberal spin and hyperbole on it. Minefeilds are a little too indiscriminate for my tastes. Just get a big goddamned fence/wall and man it with armed soldiers.
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 5:11:34 PM EDT

Originally Posted By 22bad:

Originally Posted By Rincon_11:

Originally Posted By 22bad:

Originally Posted By double_wielder:
I am pretty sure that the sensors are more than 1% effective.




Of the incidents agents investigated, 90 percent were caused by something other than illegal activity, like a passing car, a train or an animal. Only 252 incidents, less than 1 percent of all the sensor alerts, led agents to apprehend people crossing the border illegally.


Dunno, it doesn't sound like a workable solution to me



This is a bunk study, I would really like to see the "sample" they used. Take any media report with a grain of salt, it's almost always biased to say the least.



I agree that the media is full of lying leftist liberals and biased to the extreme........

But, didn't the Minutemen observers DRAMATICALLY increase the BP apprehension numbers
most likely because the human beings were MUCH more accurate than the sensors?



No, not in the least if I remember correctly. I think someone posted that after either one month or three, can't remember which, they were responsible for 30 apprehensions. BP's in a hot area can sack that many up in 1 night. HOWEVER, I do think they had a dramatic affect in deterring traffic in the areas that they were observing in. Also, I believe that you would find most PA's supportive of their efforts contrary to a lot or "reports" put out. Every bit counts.
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 5:14:19 PM EDT

Originally Posted By PaDanby:
How you can make a sensor sensitive enough to pick up people walking in the area, and not have it pickup large animals in the area or small animals close, or the Southern Pacific RR freight trains a few miles away is beyond me. Toss in trucks on nearby roads in many areas and you will have detections that count to the total but aren't what you are looking for. I don't think I saw the numbers annotated that way.



I will not go into details, but they are not full proof. You are right about that. Of course they false sometimes, but cerain ones are full proof and sensors are not the only thing used to detect aliens but they are a good start.
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 7:45:47 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Rincon_11:

Originally Posted By PaDanby:
How you can make a sensor sensitive enough to pick up people walking in the area, and not have it pickup large animals in the area or small animals close, or the Southern Pacific RR freight trains a few miles away is beyond me. Toss in trucks on nearby roads in many areas and you will have detections that count to the total but aren't what you are looking for. I don't think I saw the numbers annotated that way.



I will not go into details, but they are not full proof. You are right about that. Of course they false sometimes, but cerain ones are full proof and sensors are not the only thing used to detect aliens but they are a good start.



Do you by any chance mean "fool proof" or is "full proof" a term that I am unaware of?

Are you claiming to have intimate knowledge of these sensors?

I don't believe that they are more effective than the Minutemen..................
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 8:09:03 PM EDT
You apparently didn't read mine all that carefully, so I will elaborate. These sensors (or any sensors) designed to pick up people are going to have a lot of inadvertant detection alarms. These are not false alarms as alledged by the article, but detections to be expected. In order to put a lot of sensors out, they are going to be relatively inexpensive and simple units. They will work on a variety of passive detection principles (although I could imagine some might be active detectors) including IR, vibration, motion, sound, etc. what you need is a central processing capability to weed out undesired alerts. These are undesired alarms NOT false alarms, they were characterized as false alarms. Any or all of these sensors will be triggerable by a variety of other things that trigger them. (Cattle, trucks, trains, mountain sheep, jaguars, etc) It would be way too expensive to put out a zillion cameras. But if your sensor systems and processing units track a series of activations that meet certain criteria, then you can make an educated determination that the contact is worth looking at. If the contacts track down certain trails, etc those moving contacts are likely to be people because animals might not do that etc.
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 8:18:00 PM EDT
With the foot pounding of a couple of hundred illegals stomping thru the desert the signal probably looks like a train and the agents ignore it. Not that they have enough agents to trace down everything.



Link Posted: 1/23/2006 8:25:22 PM EDT
It's not the sensors that are ineffective, it's the follow-up response that is ineffective. Hard to catch and detain several hundred thousand people a day...
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 8:25:41 PM EDT

Of the incidents agents investigated, 90 percent were caused by something other than illegal activity, like a passing car, a train or an animal. Only 252 incidents, less than 1 percent of all the sensor alerts, led agents to apprehend people crossing the border illegally.


The system doesn't work, the Agents time is being wasted INTENTIONALLY, I believe
Link Posted: 1/24/2006 1:13:42 AM EDT

Originally Posted By 22bad:

Originally Posted By Rincon_11:

Originally Posted By PaDanby:
How you can make a sensor sensitive enough to pick up people walking in the area, and not have it pickup large animals in the area or small animals close, or the Southern Pacific RR freight trains a few miles away is beyond me. Toss in trucks on nearby roads in many areas and you will have detections that count to the total but aren't what you are looking for. I don't think I saw the numbers annotated that way.



I will not go into details, but they are not full proof. You are right about that. Of course they false sometimes, but cerain ones are full proof and sensors are not the only thing used to detect aliens but they are a good start.



Do you by any chance mean "fool proof" or is "full proof" a term that I am unaware of?

Are you claiming to have intimate knowledge of these sensors?

I don't believe that they are more effective than the Minutemen..................



OK ya silly bastard, you got me all paranoid so I spell checked it. It checks out

Know, back to sensors. As far as apprehensions go, sensors are going to be much more affective. This is just simple numbers. If you are going to make the Minutemen argument, you should go the "deterrent" route, because this is really what they did best. A lot of people think that a bunch of folks from the South just get together and decide to cross the border and look for a job. Well, in actually what happens is people come from all over Central and South America and congregate in Mexican border towns looking for safe transport into this country. The transport is usually some local dipshits who have a system for making this happen. This includes scouts, look-outs, night vision, 2-way radios, etc. They can get pretty creative. Now, if a large group of US Citizens have made a pledge to moniter certain areas and show-up to do the job, it will not be too long before traffic slows down there.
Link Posted: 1/24/2006 1:31:42 AM EDT

Originally Posted By PaDanby:
You apparently didn't read mine all that carefully, so I will elaborate. These sensors (or any sensors) designed to pick up people are going to have a lot of inadvertant detection alarms. These are not false alarms as alledged by the article, but detections to be expected. In order to put a lot of sensors out, they are going to be relatively inexpensive and simple units. They will work on a variety of passive detection principles (although I could imagine some might be active detectors) including IR, vibration, motion, sound, etc. what you need is a central processing capability to weed out undesired alerts. These are undesired alarms NOT false alarms, they were characterized as false alarms. Any or all of these sensors will be triggerable by a variety of other things that trigger them. (Cattle, trucks, trains, mountain sheep, jaguars, etc) It would be way too expensive to put out a zillion cameras. But if your sensor systems and processing units track a series of activations that meet certain criteria, then you can make an educated determination that the contact is worth looking at. If the contacts track down certain trails, etc those moving contacts are likely to be people because animals might not do that etc.



My bad, didn't know you wanted to get so literal. OK, let me re-phrase, "When these sensors designed to detect humans detect things other than people, just plain misfire or are not functioning properly". Just go ahead and insert that in places where I put "false", that should make things easier Sorry, we call them "falses", I guess it's just easier than "undesirable alarms". Now, do you really think anyone read my post and was confused with what I was saying?
Link Posted: 1/24/2006 3:09:50 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/24/2006 3:11:56 PM EDT by 22bad]

Originally Posted By Rincon_11:

Originally Posted By 22bad:
Do you by any chance mean "fool proof" or is "full proof" a term that I am unaware of?



OK ya silly bastard, you got me all paranoid so I spell checked it. It checks out



Gotcha

eta: I think they shoot "full proof" loads in custom barrels to test them out
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