Track the Police – License Plate Reader Data on Law Enforcement Vehicles

The following was submitted by Melissa Hill.

Do you know that license plate reader cameras may be tracking your every move in some states? In my state of Minnesota, the license plate readers are everywhere and some cities even keep and retain the data on the license plates for awhile such as 90 days in the City of Minneapolis. Under our public data practice laws, anyone may request the data on any license plate that is picked up by one of these readers.

With some photos I took of parked law enforcement vehicles I spotted including agencies such as the FBI, ICE, and Minneapolis Police, I requested the data on each of the license plates and got some data back. I decided to create a blog, Track the Police, to better organize and present this data.

This blog welcomes new input and submissions from others. The data practice/FOIA laws in your state may vary but it may be worth a shot. If you are able to obtain public data on law enforcement vehicles and would like to submit it, please feel free to contact

Link to blog:

Intro on blog:

Track the Police is an online blog dedicated to tracking the movements of police and law enforcement personnel vehicles by using publicly gathered data via data practice acts or FOIA. This data is part of the information that the Automated License Plate Readers (ALPR) gather in many states including the State of Minnesota to track a vehicle’s movements. While the owner of this blog resides in Minneapolis, Track the Police welcomes submissions from anywhere in the country where ALPR are being used to track and gather data on residents. This blog is dedicated only to tracking the police and law enforcement vehicles. If they want to watch us, we’ll watch them back!



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