Technology: Facial recognition surveillance would require warrant under bipartisan bill - - PressFrom - US
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Technology Facial recognition surveillance would require warrant under bipartisan bill

19:26  14 november  2019
19:26  14 november  2019 Source:   cnet.com

California's new police body cam law blocks the use of facial recognition

  California's new police body cam law blocks the use of facial recognition Tampa Bay's offense puts up four runs against Justin Verlander and knock the Astros' pitcher out in the 4th inning as the Rays beat the Astros 4-1 forcing a decisive Game 5 in Houston. Blake Snell picks up the save in his first career relief outing.

Two senators introduced a bill Thursday to limit how federal law enforcement agencies can use facial recognition technology. Lawmakers have looked at the technology as a bipartisan concern, raising issues with surveillance, privacy and civil liberties surrounding facial recognition.

a close up of a white brick wall: The bipartisan bill would limit how federal agencies can use facial recognition. James Martin/CNET© Provided by CBS Interactive Inc. The bipartisan bill would limit how federal agencies can use facial recognition. James Martin/CNET

The Facial Recognition Technology Warrant Act was introduced by Sen. Chris Coons, a Democrat from Delaware, and Sen. Mike Lee, a Republican from Utah. The bill calls for federal agencies like the FBI and US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to obtain a warrant if they want to use facial recognition for ongoing surveillance, like tracking a person's whereabouts for longer than 72 hours.

California's new police body cam law blocks the use of facial recognition

  California's new police body cam law blocks the use of facial recognition In August, backers of California's Body Camera Accountability Act pointed out a test of facial recognition software that identified 26 state lawmakers as criminals. They argued it showed the flaws of such technology, and now Governor Gavin Newsom has signed AB1215 into law, preventing law enforcement in the state from "installing, activating, or using any biometric surveillance system in connection with an officer camera or data collected by an officer camera" through 2023.The bill's sponsor, Phil Ting said of facial recognition tech, "It's not ready for prime time, as it falsely matches innocent people with mugshots, including me.

a close up of a white wall: The bipartisan bill would limit how federal agencies can use facial recognition.© CNET

The bipartisan bill would limit how federal agencies can use facial recognition.

"Right now, there is a lack of uniformity when it comes to how, when, and where the federal government deploys facial recognition technology," Coons said in a statement. "This bipartisan bill strikes the right balance by making sure law enforcement has the tools necessary to keep us safe while also protecting fundamental Fourth Amendment privacy rights."

The proposed legislation would also require any use of facial recognition to minimize the amount of data collected about people. Federal government use of facial recognition is mostly unregulated, which has allowed US agencies to amass a database of people's images.

ACLU sues DOJ, FBI over facial recognition secrecy

  ACLU sues DOJ, FBI over facial recognition secrecy The rights organization wants to know who has access to your biometric data."The public has a right to know when, where, and how law enforcement agencies are using face recognition technology, and what safeguards, if any, are in place to protect our rights," said the Massachusetts ACLU's Kade Crockford in a release. Crockford added that the government's use of surveillance tech threatens to "fundamentally alter our free society.

The FBI has one of the largest facial recognition databases, with more than 641 million images of US citizens collected from driver's licenses and passports. This database is often accessed by law enforcement, without a warrant or any probable cause.

ICE has also been scanning millions of Americans' license photos for facial recognition searches.

"Facial recognition technology can be a powerful tool for law enforcement officials," Lee said in a statement. "But it's very power also makes it ripe for abuse. That is why American citizens deserve protection from facial recognition abuse."

The bill introduced Thursday wouldn't stop the use of facial recognition for identification purposes, which is how ICE and the FBI have been tapping the tech in several cases. The proposed legislation would specifically require a warrant to use facial recognition to follow a person around.

ACLU sues to reveal the FBI's uses of facial recognition

  ACLU sues to reveal the FBI's uses of facial recognition The ACLU is unsurprisingly concerned about the FBI's use of facial recognition, and it wants to force the agency to divulge its practices. It just filed a lawsuit against the FBI, the Justice Department and the DEA ordering them to turn over records showing "when, where and how" they use facial recognition tech. The civil liberties group was concerned that these systems could "fundamentally alter" society and lead to constant surveillance, and pointed to the FBI's history and public stances as reasons to be concerned.The FBI has engaged in "political policing," the ACLU said, including spying on peaceful activists.

It would also apply only to federal agencies, so local police departments would still be able to use facial recognition if the bill becomes law. Local lawmakers have taken facial recognition regulations into their own hands, with cities like San Francisco, Oakland, California, and Somerville, Massachusetts banning government use of the technology.

The bill was introduced the same day that Fight for the Future activists took to the streets of Washington, DC, to scan the faces of passersby as a way of demonstrating the lack of facial recognition laws.

The Facial Recognition Technology Warrant Act isn't the only federal legislation proposed on limiting facial recognition. In March, two US senators introduced a bill to prevent businesses from using facial recognition without customers' consent. A group of lawmakers also introduced legislation in July to prevent facial recognition from being used in public housing.

You can read a copy of the Facial Recognition Technology Warrant Act here:

Border Agents Could Get Bodycams With Facial Recognition Technology .
Customs and Border Protection is considering outfitting Border Patrol with controversial facial recognition technology deployed through their body cameras, according to a new federal filing. The agency has published a Request for Information from potential vendors on expanding its network of officer-worn body cameras, specifically to record interactions with the public—both U.S. and foreign citizens—in areas fixed cameras may not reach. WithinThe agency has published a Request for Information from potential vendors on expanding its network of officer-worn body cameras, specifically to record interactions with the public—both U.S. and foreign citizens—in areas fixed cameras may not reach.

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