For his part, Schmidt went on to stress the ubiquity and value of cellular phones as well as the use of "packet switching," a means to break information into pieces and distribute it to the right people and places in a way that provides anonymity to the sender and pushes for maximum accountability of the people who receive and process that information. In this way, Google hopes, it can help ensure that timely, accurate information about criminal activities goes to responsible, responsive government authorities.
It's a laudable and important goal, and one that Mexico's Security Minister Alejandro Poire picked up on day two, saying he and his team, in the four months before the incoming government takes over, would push to use 95 million cellular phones in Mexico in the fight against organized crime.
"If you see something, cell [phone] something," Poire joked about the slogan he might employ, which he admitted had no Spanish-language equivalent. (See all available conference video here.)
But the well-choreographed (possibly multi-million dollar) conference was more than a government-Google love fest. Numerous victims gave live testimony of their experiences, and some offered words of inspiration. The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) presented its latest work on the trafficking and trade of human body parts. (Full disclosure: I am an ICIJ member).
Mixed into the conference were a few of Google's consulting partners, most notably Palantir, a software design firm that provided the tech tools for ICIJ to sift through and present its investigative story; and Caerus, a private security business that is most famous for providing the US government advice on how to identify and neutralize the most notorious Iraqi and foreign terrorist cells operating during the worst of that country's war.