US surveillance flight paths for the FBI and Homeland Security

Posted to Maps  |  Tags: , , ,  |  Nathan Yau

Peter Aldhous and Charles Seife dug into flight path data, specifically looking for flights manned by the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security.

The government’s airborne surveillance has received little public scrutiny — until now. BuzzFeed News has assembled an unprecedented picture of the operation’s scale and sweep by analyzing aircraft location data collected by the flight-tracking website Flightradar24 from mid-August to the end of December last year, identifying about 200 federal aircraft. Day after day, dozens of these planes circled above cities across the nation.

BuzzFeed’s searchable, animated map shows these circular paths, red for FBI and blue for DHS. There was no definite answer for what those planes are doing. Maybe routine surveillance or maybe lookouts for specific people or events. But still, so interesting.

Favorites

19 Maps That Will Blow Your Mind and Change the Way You See the World. Top All-time. You Won’t Believe Your Eyes. Watch.

Many lists of maps promise to change the way you see the world, but this one actually does.

10 Best Data Visualization Projects of 2015

These are my picks for the best of 2015. As usual, they could easily appear in a different order on a different day, and there are projects not on the list that were also excellent.

Life expectancy changes

The data goes back to 1960 and up to the most current estimates for 2009. Each line represents a country.

How to Spot Visualization Lies

Many charts don’t tell the truth. This is a simple guide to spotting them.