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DHS wants $101 million to upgrade its border surveillance towers

The border wall in Nogales, Ariz. has a number of anti-personnel features.

If the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) gets its way, Congress will grant it more than $107 billion to run its enforcement regime during the 2025 fiscal year. Buried in the lengthy budget request is $101 million to upgrade and maintain the network of surveillance towers scattered throughout the borderlands, first noted by The Intercept. According to its own official publications, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) hopes to fully integrate these systems through AI.

Politicians from both parties have long hailed CBP’s vast system, called the Integrated Surveillance Towers, as a sort of virtual wall that allows agents to better patrol the border. Although the surveillance towers comprise a small fraction of DHS’s gargantuan budget,…

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