Clearview AI built a massive database of faces that it’s making available to law enforcement, and nobody’s stopping it.

FACIAL RECOGNITION: BIOMETRIC PRIVACY RIGHT NEEDED

The Big Data revolution has transformed the social sciences just as the microscope and the telescope transformed the natural sciences.

Clearview AI built a massive database of faces that it’s making available to law enforcement, and nobody’s stopping it, reports VOX.

Photo by j k on Unsplash

New facial recognition technology may be used to target returning citizens. “A little knowledge is a dangerous thing,” warns the Brookings Institute in a TechTank blog by Nila Bala and Lars Trautman. Most recent news stories focus on the facial recognition technology’s mistakes. For example, the ACLU conducted a test of Amazon’s new technology “Rekognition,” and the software misidentified 28 members of Congress as having a previous criminal record.

BIOMETRIC PRIVACY RIGHT NEEDED

“Privacy is shorthand for…self-development,” writes Julie Cohen, Georgetown University law professor. Such privacy is “vital for individuals returning to society with a criminal record,” the Brookings’ blog states.
Any privacy is uniquely harmed when biometric information (like facial recognition) becomes instantly available. Much activist attention focuses on the danger of a world where innocents are identified as guilty by a flaw in new technology. A much bigger risk is “a world where a guilty person can never be anything but a criminal,” states Brookings.

The possibilities do not look encouraging. “The few states that have enacted biometric privacy laws have made exceptions for law enforcement,” according to Brookings. Only a few cities have dealt with law enforcement surveillance risk. Given the growing efficiency of new biometric technologies, like facial recognition, a counterbalancing legal privacy right could aid both the employment and reintegration into a community of returning citizens.

Father, attorney, essayist, thinker, and active manager who found the courage to create through the chrysalis of San Quentin prison.

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