Is This a Police SUV Disguised as a Google Street View Vehicle?
Photo by Matt Blaze (Twitter)
Earlier today, security researcher Matt Blaze tweeted out this photo of what’s allegedly a Pennsylvania State Police SUV. It looks like it’s outfitted with a license plate reader. Blaze contends that not only is this a police vehicle, but it’s disguised as a Google Street View truck. Wait, what?
At first glance it almost looks like someone photoshopped that Google Maps logo on the side of the SUV. But one indication that it’s probably not a Photoshop job is that you can see the bubbles on the vinyl sticker:
It’s entirely possible that some prankster put the sticker there, though it seems like getting one printed would be a lot of effort for a silly joke. There’s also the possibility that this isn’t a vehicle operated by the Pennsylvania State Police. We have a call into the PA Police and will update this post when we hear back.
If it is the police, it’s a pretty dumb plan. As Blaze points out in a later tweet, it’s a terrible disguise and would no doubt just attract more attention to the SUV and it’s clandestine activities. Have you ever been looking at Google Street View and noticed how many people stare directly into the camera? The police may as well have put a sign on the side that said “free ice cream, nothing to see here.”