Can Big Data Trace Gun Threats? Perhaps Easily.

Can Big Data Trace Gun Threats? Perhaps easily.

Everyone knows that if they look at one tile site on the web, they will be getting tile ads for weeks and phone spam calls. Big Data knows who you are in many classifications, and applies them with well tested genius algorithms. Your cell phone apps are always tracking you, unless you work to turn that off. Get a car with GPS, and you are tracked. Congress does not care about your privacy when Big Data is making a fortune and boosting the stock futures of digital stocks.

Yet, the Republican Congress with their closest friend, the NRA, has banned the FBI keeping computer records and permanent computer records of gun and ammunition sales. So correlating and recognizing purchase violators is difficult and cannot use the incredible intelligence of the digital world.

Big Data algorithms form internal associations that aren’t even designed in or anticipated by humans, nor are they easily read out. They are trained on specific data sets with specific goals. Unfortunately, the data set of mass killings keeps growing. As an example, the Las Vegas shooter had bought a dozen assault rifles, a dozen bump stocks, and lots of large magazines. Hardly a recreational user. He also had bought spy cameras. He took hotel rooms at a high level overlooking outdoor concerts. He had lost large recently. Other clues we haven’t heard about yet.

I don’t work in Big Data, Hence, Big Data professionals have thought of this year’s ago, and probably sold their services to appropriate agencies. Congress would never directly have approved of spending money on Big Data tracking gun purchases. But big data would track internet purchases of guns, ammo, and gun stocks as they would any other purchase, and could be used to close the Internet sales loophole. If gun businesses at gun shows take credit cards or checks, or have to keep gun sales records, Big Data might also partly close the gun show loophole. There is also the purchase of bulletproof vests or other armor.

Big Data can track access to ISIS sites, truck rentals, scoping out sites, and any suspicious messages left on social media.

Big Data is still growing, and is supposed to employ over a 100,000 people by 2020. Hopefully it will prove to be a useful source of keeping guns and other armaments from people who shouldn’t have them.

About Dennis SILVERMAN

I am a retired Professor of Physics and Astronomy at U C Irvine. For a decade I have been active in learning about energy and the environment, and in lecturing and attending classes at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at UC Irvine.
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