Having served in the military, in the intelligence branch *pause while all the military intelligence is an oxymoron jokes float past* I feel impelled to add, that the satellite itself is not reading your license plate. Even with the naked eye the resolution is not quite that good. However intelligence professionals rely on *gasp* computer software to give them a "best guess". These programs are not 100% infallible, but they definitely up the ante. These programs can look at an image and by determining the subtle nuances of the "blur" that is the licence plate, give a pretty good picture of what that plate reads.

The node title is still accurate. No, Spy Satellites cannot read your license plate number, however Spy Satellite images in consort with image enchancing technology and the trained eye of imagery analysts can.