News Release

The Big Tech Surveillance Wall Being Built Under the Radar


TODD MILLER,, @memomiller

Miller writes at The Border Chronicle and just wrote the piece “Autonomous Surveillance Towers Are Creeping Up the California Coast.”

He said today: “Right now there is a massive expansion of surveillance infrastructure on the U.S. border that is under the radar. In the national discourse while there is a fallacious debate around open borders, the Joe Biden administration is operating the highest budget ever for border and immigration enforcement. The $29.8 billion in the 2023 budget dwarfs Donald Trump’s inaugural budget of $21.2 billion and that of his parting year of $24.6 billion, and follows a much longer-term trend of constant increase. These budgets, a sum that combines Customs and Border Protection and Immigration and Customs Enforcement, have translated into more than 700 miles of walls and barriers, over 20,000 Border Patrol agents, hundreds of detention centers (including helping Mexico finance its own immigration prisons such as the one that had the deadly fire last week), a fleet of deportation planes, and billions of dollars in technology.

“Along these lines, the emphasis of the Biden administration has been not a physical, but a virtual wall. The Electronic Frontier Foundation, an organization that defends the civil liberties of people in the digital age, released an interactive map on March 20 showing the locations of 319 towers along the U.S. Mexico border. They also obtained documents showing that DHS has a plan to construct 336 new towers over the next decade and are searching companies to contract for that purpose. Biden underscored this in a tweet” recently “that stated ‘The border needs more resources. Not less.'”

Miller writes: “It is surprising, given these record-setting budgets and emphasis on surveillance, that this administration evades the same media scrutiny that bore into Trump during his administration.”

Miller’s books include Empire of Borders: The Expansion of the U.S. Border around the World and Border Patrol Nation: Dispatches from the Front Lines of Homeland Security.