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Are Google Satellite Images A Security Threat?  
User currently offlineCha747 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 785 posts, RR: 6
Posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 3149 times:

As long as I can remember, Jamngar, India's airport shares runways with an Indian Air Force base there. Hence, there are no landing lights on at night and there is no scheduled service there at night for "security" reasons. Now, with the satellite image feature on Google maps, Jamnagar's airfield is clearly visible. Do countries have a say in what Google maps can post on the internet and what they cannot? I can find Maxwell AFB in Montgomery, AL, Edwards AFB in CA, and perhaps even a runway at/near Area 54 (?...I am looking west of Roswell, NM). Can Google just show anything they want?

[Edited 2005-07-09 20:19:13]


You land a million planes safely, then you have one little mid-air and you never hear the end of it - Pushing Tin
42 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineBHXFAOTIPYYC From Portugal, joined Jun 2005, 1644 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 3120 times:

I assume so. I doubt India can tell Google what to show or not to show any more than Bush can tell the press what to say about him. Let's face it, there is a lot more damaging info available on the www than Google sat images.


Breakfast in BHX, lunch in FAO, dinner in TIP, baggage in YYC.
User currently offlinePADSpot From Germany, joined Jan 2005, 1676 posts, RR: 5
Reply 2, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 3114 times:

There's a very little govs could do against google, because there are satellite pictures commercially available that are far better than those on google maps. Although the 1-meter resolution remains the maximum for civilian purposes (like the images showing Manhatten). Area 51 can been seen and airbases around the world. Often airbases are the only notable in some of the high-resolution spots ...

User currently offlineGigneil From United States of America, joined Nov 2002, 16347 posts, RR: 85
Reply 3, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 3109 times:

India can absolutely restrict visibility of their secure areas. Its not as if Google owns the satellites, and India could easily restrict the provider of the imagery from selling them.

N


User currently offlineJfkaua From United States of America, joined Aug 2004, 1000 posts, RR: 3
Reply 4, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 3062 times:

Quoting Gigneil (Reply 3):
India can absolutely restrict visibility of their secure areas. Its not as if Google owns the satellites, and India could easily restrict the provider of the imagery from selling them.

how?


User currently offlinePADSpot From Germany, joined Jan 2005, 1676 posts, RR: 5
Reply 5, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 3023 times:

Quoting Gigneil (Reply 3):
India can absolutely restrict visibility of their secure areas. Its not as if Google owns the satellites, and India could easily restrict the provider of the imagery from selling them.

There is no international legal agreement that would enable any government to enforce its security concerns as regards civilian satellite images owned by a company in some other country. Meanwhile there are satellite maps commercially available that cover the entire planet with an 1-meter resolution. If restriction would be possible you would definitely find some "black spots" on the maps ... but there are none. Even "Area51" (10m resolution), Edwards AFB (1m resolution) etc ... There are even those North Korean areas in 1m resolution, where those nuclear plants are suspected.

But I know that there is an restriction that regulates the development of ultrahigh-resolution cameras e.g for satellites. From some point on there are considered as a "weapon" and are therefore restricted. But that's only valid for some countries like the US. Germany has a similar but more liberal regulation ...


User currently offline1MillionFlyer From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 3019 times:

Quoting Gigneil (Reply 3):
India can absolutely restrict visibility of their secure areas. Its not as if Google owns the satellites, and India could easily restrict the provider of the imagery from selling them.

N

Actually no they can't. Area 51 is on google maps!


User currently offlineLobster From Germany, joined Oct 2008, 49 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 2995 times:

Has anybody noticed that the Whitehouse is blurry? Its the only thing that I've come across so far that is like this. hmm.

User currently offlineACDC8 From Canada, joined Mar 2005, 7642 posts, RR: 35
Reply 8, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 2977 times:

Quoting Lobster (Reply 7):
Has anybody noticed that the Whitehouse is blurry?

Maybe the picture was taken when Clinton was in office and he had Monica over for a "cigar" ....  Silly



A Grumpy German Is A Sauerkraut
User currently offlineSATL382G From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 2951 times:

Quoting Lobster (Reply 7):
Has anybody noticed that the Whitehouse is blurry? Its the only thing that I've come across so far that is like this. hmm.

The U.S. Capitol is blurry. The White House is clear but has areas greyed out.....


User currently offlinePADSpot From Germany, joined Jan 2005, 1676 posts, RR: 5
Reply 10, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 2928 times:

Quoting Lobster (Reply 7):
Has anybody noticed that the Whitehouse is blurry? Its the only thing that I've come across so far that is like this. hmm.

Ehhhmmm ... isn't that the Capitol? The are also some neighboring buildings blurred

I am using the Google Earth programm but it should use the same maps.
The White House is, I think, further to the north west with its roof in a strange brownish color and two neighboring buildings are blurred and shaded with a brownish-grey color.

[Edited 2005-07-09 21:32:47]

User currently offlineZvezda From Lithuania, joined Aug 2004, 10511 posts, RR: 64
Reply 11, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 2921 times:

The domestication of fire is a security threat -- as is nearly every technological advance since. Get over it. There is no safety in Ludditism.

User currently offlineDeltaWings From Switzerland, joined Aug 2004, 1294 posts, RR: 17
Reply 12, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 2888 times:

Are 51 is blocked off, if you try to zoom in all the way. You can see not much further then TNX (Tonopah Test Range).


Homer: Marge, it takes two to lie. One to lie and one to listen.
User currently offlinePADSpot From Germany, joined Jan 2005, 1676 posts, RR: 5
Reply 13, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 2856 times:

Quoting DeltaWings (Reply 12):
Are 51 is blocked off, if you try to zoom in all the way. You can see not much further then TNX (Tonopah Test Range)

That doesn't mean that it is blocked, but the resolution of the satellite image is not better than than 10m. It also seems to be a radar image, which shows wrong colors. Most of the US look like this on Google Earth.

If you are look for satellite images of "Area51" just look on the web. There are plenty of them ... GlobalSecurity.org for instance ...

[Edited 2005-07-09 21:52:26]

User currently offlineDeltaWings From Switzerland, joined Aug 2004, 1294 posts, RR: 17
Reply 14, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 2830 times:

Quoting PADSpot (Reply 13):
That doesn't mean that it is blocked, but the resolution of the satellite image is not better than than 10m. It also seems to be a radar image, which shows wrong colors. Most of the US look like this on Google Earth.

Yes it is blocked, because saw it.



Homer: Marge, it takes two to lie. One to lie and one to listen.
User currently offlineUPS707 From United States of America, joined Sep 2004, 360 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 2611 times:

Quoting Lobster (Reply 7):
Has anybody noticed that the Whitehouse is blurry? Its the only thing that I've come across so far that is like this. hmm.

Go figure... Disneyworld in FL is the same way. We were looking at the parks the other day and Disneyland is fine, but DW has the same blurring that downtown DC has.


User currently offlineDogfighter2111 From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2004, 1968 posts, RR: 1
Reply 16, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 2543 times:

Has anyone seen Area 51 and wouldn't mind getting an image of it and posting it?

I have always been curious about it...

Thanks
Mike


User currently offlineL-188 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 29795 posts, RR: 58
Reply 17, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 2533 times:

Quoting PADSpot (Reply 5):
There is no international legal agreement that would enable any government to enforce its security concerns as regards civilian satellite images owned by a company in some other country. Meanwhile there are satellite maps commercially available that cover the entire planet with an 1-meter resolution. If restriction would be possible you would definitely find some "black spots" on the maps ... but there are none. Even "Area51" (10m resolution), Edwards AFB (1m resolution) etc ... There are even those North Korean areas in 1m resolution, where those nuclear plants are suspected.

While there is not international convention against this, I am pretty sure that the US goverment did buy the rights to all of the Terraserver images taken over Afghanistand and Iraq during the initial operations there.

I assume that they have also approached other operators to keep those images off the market.



OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
User currently offlineEchster From United States of America, joined Sep 2004, 399 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 2509 times:

To answer your question, I don't think it likely that the satellite pics on Google are a security threat. IMHO, the image intensification is not of high enough quality to ascertain anything but the general location of a target. Now, let's say, military grade sat pics made it on the net, then that would be a larger security threat.

User currently offlineKnoxibus From France, joined Aug 2007, 259 posts, RR: 23
Reply 19, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 2427 times:
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Well I always wondered because so many big airports are so close to main cities that the resolution on Google Earth is quite accurate, so....

Anyway they put Area51 as a default placemark but resolution is bad, however, US Govt did ask Google to blur the Capitol???, so it is possible then (I bet it's to hide where the SAM sites are located.)

Just for fun, I tried to find some "sensible" areas (well I consider sensible).

Managed to find two Aircraft carriers (one in San Diego, the other in Norfolk), and a nuclear submarine in Groton's Electrical Boat.

Personnally, on the civil aviation side, it should be treated as a risk, but then again it's always easier to pan-scan on your PC first instead actually scouting around on airport and having the possibility of being spotted (I am talking about somebody whith evil deeds here!)

However, might be good to find some new spotting location?

[Edited 2005-07-10 11:46:44]


No matter what anybody tells you, words and ideas can change the world.
User currently offlineWGW2707 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 1197 posts, RR: 34
Reply 20, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 2408 times:

I'd be suprised if the US Government actually asked for either the White House or the Capitol Building to be blurred, since the Google satellite views are NOT in real time and the Capitol and White House are practically the most photographed buildings in the country. So many pictures of the White House have been taken, and I would assume continue to be taken, that you could probably assemble them to form a complete three dimensional model, and the same goes for the Capitol. Is this a security risk? I sincerely hope not. One would prefer to believe that anything THAT sensitive is safely concealed underground.

-WGW2707


User currently offlineLufthansa From Christmas Island, joined May 1999, 3207 posts, RR: 10
Reply 21, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 2387 times:

It isn't a security risk for the simple reason, that if somebody wants to find out that information they can simply get on the ground and photograph it in more detail. Remember the kind of person who would do this is an extremist, and therefore willing to go to extreme lengths.


Also as has been said, there are far better quality satillite images out there available if you pay...for just about anywhere in the world you want.


User currently offlineTIMC From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2005, 133 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 2380 times:

Are these maps real time?

I was just thinking you could see all the activity at that moment for any airport if they were...


User currently offlineBirdwatching From Germany, joined Sep 2003, 3818 posts, RR: 51
Reply 23, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 2358 times:

http://maps.google.com/maps?ll=37.25...98&spn=0.086921,0.120352&t=k&hl=en

Area 51 is whitened out, no matter what you guys are saying in previous posts. Geez, why don't you LOOK at what you are talking about before posting.



All the things you probably hate about travelling are warm reminders that I'm home
User currently offlineMD11Engineer From Germany, joined Oct 2003, 13985 posts, RR: 62
Reply 24, posted (9 years 1 month 2 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 2345 times:

The google pictures are made up out of a mosaic of different pictures taken by different satellites using different techniques (e.g. pictures taken at high resolution, at lower resolution, in the visible optical range and infrared pictures). E.g. there is a neat line going through Berlin, Germany, everything to the east of it is high resolution, while the west is in slightly different colours, and lower resolution.

I also noticed that some pictures have a better resolution than 1 meter. On the picture showing the place where my daughter lives near Sacramento, Ca, I could distinguish the floor markings on the parking lots, which are appr. 10 centimeters wide, on these pictures it seemed to have been the limit of the resolution.

Jan


25 QANTASFOREVER : Google isn't the issue here. If commerical satellites can see secret stuff, so can governments. It's not like rivals to India get their information fr
26 Post contains images Monteycarlos : One may be entitled to think that Pakistan have their own Satellites if they have their own Nuclear Weapons Program....
27 Aseem : this is nothing, try zooming into New Delhi, and you can figure out Indian Parliament, Prime Minister's residence, Presidential Palace and what not..
28 L410Turbolet : Exactly. I mean erasing things from maps is soo Cold War-like. Sometimes I wonder if those Russian generals or whoever decided not to give names, onl
29 Vulindlela : Has anybody looked at Arlington VA on google earth? The downtown area looks as if each block was taken from a different viewpoint and assembled later.
30 STLGph : when you go to google maps, what do you type in in order for area 51 to appear? if you scroll around the "general area" there's quite a few more of th
31 Post contains images Newark777 : Area 51 is whitened out, no matter what you guys are saying in previous posts. Geez, why don't you LOOK at what you are talking about before posting.
32 DesertJets : Spending time on Google Maps can be a lot of fun. Zoomed right in over the Norfolk Naval Base and found 2 carriers, 1 LHD, any number of cruisers, des
33 STLGph : most photos i have looked at seem to be taken around the late 2001 through mid 2002 period. this is just going by what i have seen based on my own kn
34 DL021 : No they can't. It's the capital. Like I said. Google it. Heck no. That's a salt lake bed....not a deliberate whiting out.
35 Aloges : Terraserver has higher resolution imagery of Groom Lake AFB, and even there, the "whitened out area" appears... complete with the runway going right
36 DL021 : Yep...you can see the runways at Edwards made the same way. The hard bed of the ancient lake makes for an excellent natural runway without the need f
37 Greasespot : Ummmm They did know where these "targets" are before google so why would it be a htreat...not like they are moving the White house arround...Heck I ca
38 Post contains links 7FTwinOtter : http://www.lasvegasnow.com/area51/Area51-072503-LG.jpg This is a pretty high res colour satellite photo. If you look on-line besides all the conspira
39 Post contains links and images Newark777 : Ummmm They did know where these "targets" are before google so why would it be a htreat...not like they are moving the White house arround...Heck I ca
40 STLGph : there are architectural ways (tiles/panels, etc.) for creating the "illusion" you see atop the white house.
41 Post contains links Newark777 : there are architectural ways (tiles/panels, etc.) for creating the "illusion" you see atop the white house. That is true, but it looks almost too unif
42 STLGph : well, from what i understand the these tiles, or whatever you want to call them, are used to shield against radar and spy satellites. it was briefly e
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