Technological solutions affect every aspect of the modern world. From faster Internet services to self-checkout kiosks, humans enjoy a wide array of amenities that were made possible by technology. Many entrepreneurs understand that technology paves the path of progress. In his effort to free the world from the shackles of oil corporations, Elon Musk is attempting to revolutionize green energy technology. Technology will eventually rid the world of pollution and environmental issues.
While numerous innovations improve the world, some technologies can harm people. Technology disperses many costs and benefits across the globe. Policymakers should carefully evaluate technologies to find ways to maximize benefits while mitigating costs. Ignoring technology is not a valid option. Technology can be credited for the survival of millions of humans, so it cannot be eliminated. However, humans can examine technologies on a case-by-case basis.
Consider the example of the modern cell phone. The smartphone is a powerful computer that offers numerous tools. From telecommunications features to nutrition tracking tools, the modern cell phone can help people overcome daily challenges. However, phones are also used to break laws. Drug dealers and violent criminals regularly use cell phones to coordinate their operations across the globe. This unfortunate fact is not a valid reason to eliminate cell phone technologies.
In fact, technology prohibition is not possible. Efforts to eliminate cell phones would likely result in increased criminal activities. Economists and criminology experts understand the effects of this kind of prohibition. When a commodity is outlawed, its supply is restricted on the open market. Over time, the supply shrinks due to seller compliance and police raids. However, the demand for the commodity does not change. This is because demand is determined by consumer preferences. These preferences are rarely affected by the legal system. Because of this, the supply shock will increase the prices of the outlawed commodities. Criminals will attempt to capture these high returns by selling the commodities on the black market. If they are initially unsuccessful, the prices of the commodities will continue to rise. This scenario can easily trigger violent responses.
In their efforts to earn high profits, criminals will use violent and clever means to evade police. This results in a situation of escalation. Police will respond with harsher tactics, and criminals will acquire heavier weapons. Prohibition is unwise. It simply results in authoritarian governments and bloodshed. Fortunately, governments do not need to use prohibition laws to control the negative effects of cell phones.
Wireless Containment Systems
In prisons and other institutions, the use of contraband cell phones can be restricted with wireless containment systems. Wireless containment systems establish a local cellular network. For phones to access provider networks, they must be screened and approved by the local network. This allows prison guards to prevent unauthorized calls in the facility. Wireless containment systems also store data about unauthorized cell phones that are detected on the local network.
These wireless containment systems can be used to control the threat of contraband mobile devices in prisons. Each year, thousands of phones are smuggled into prisons across the United States. This may not seem like a large issue to untrained individuals, but communication technologies are used by criminals for a wide array of heinous acts. If a gang leader owns a contraband mobile device in a prison, he can communicate with his criminal contacts. This allows gangs to continue to peddle drugs and murder rivals. Gang leaders have also used mobile devices to order breakout attempts and kidnappings.
Contraband mobile devices also pose a threat to the employees of prisons and detention centers. Inmates have used contraband phones to order assassinations. In Bishopville, SC, Captain Robert Johnson received a tip from an inmate that he would be targeted by an assassin in his home. Johnson took the threat seriously, and he remained alert for several weeks. Johnson developed a habit of staying indoors at night. Unfortunately, the assassin arrived while Johnson was preparing for a day of work at the prison.
The assassin broke through the main entrance of Johnson’s home. To protect his family, Johnson shouted at the assassin. The assassin charged at Johnson. A fight ensued, but Johnson was forced onto his back by the assassin. Johnson sustained six shots to the abdomen and chest before the assassin fled the scene. Captain Robert Johnson was airlifted to the local hospital. He survived the attack.
Johnson believes that he was targeted for seizing contraband items from criminals at the prison. Over the years, Johnson sabotaged numerous smuggling operations in the operation. The assassination came from a gang leader within the prison. This tragic situation could have been avoided if the gang leader was not able to access a contraband cell phone. A wireless containment system would ensure that all contraband cell phones are useless within the prison facility.
Unfortunately, assassination attempts are not uncommon in the United States. Numerous people are targeted by gangs that receive orders from imprisoned leaders. For example, the leader of Sex Money Murder Crew ordered a hit on the child of a prison guard. Prisoners in North Carolina also organized the kidnapping of a prosecutor’s father. These heinous acts of revenge are violent and unlawful. They can be prevented with Securus’ WCS.
Can Prisons Interfere With Cellular Communications?
While wireless containment systems can completely eliminate the use of contraband devices in prisons, some people argue that the technology is unethical. These critics argue that prisoners have rights to communicate with family members, friends, and attorneys. They also argue that signal jamming is unacceptable.
These critics are correct on both accounts. Prisoners have rights to communicate with the outside world, and jamming has been unlawful since 1934. However, wireless containment systems do not interfere with an inmate’s ability to communicate with approved contacts. They can use prison landlines for this purpose. Wireless communication systems also do not rely on jamming methods. Instead, WCS technologies are similar to WiFi security methods that only allow authorized devices onto the network.
To understand the wireless containment system technology, imagine a prison. Inmates cannot leave the prison until they receive permission from a judge and the warden. The wireless containment system operates in a similar manner. In this example, the public LTE network is the free world. Prisoners are placed within a local network. This local network is the prison. To communicate with the public LTE network, devices must be registered with the local network. This allows prison guards to control who can communicate with people in the outside world. Contraband devices are never granted permission to leave the local network in this system. Furthermore, unregistered devices are flagged by the system.
Due to his near-death experience, Captain Robert Johnson is a strong advocate of wireless containment systems. He believes that this technology will save the lives of numerous prison guards, judges, and attorneys in the future. Securus Technologies, the company that creates wireless containment systems, appreciates the support of Robert Johnson. The company regards Johnson as a hero. They are currently paying the medical bills that Johnson accumulated after 24 surgeries. The government must work with technology companies to create solutions for America’s prison problems.