Half of Americans Adults Already In Facial Recognition Network

To help identify a culprit, police may ask people to volunteer to be in a line-up. But that scenario is fast becoming obsolete, as more than 117 million Americans are now part of face-recognition software programs used by law enforcement, a study finds.
“Perpetual Line-Up” co-author Alvaro Bedoya, who is also Executive Director of the Center on Privacy & Technology, said in a press release: “Innocent people don’t belong in criminal databases. By using face recognition to scan the faces on 26 states’ driver’s license and ID photos, police and the FBI have basically enrolled half of all adults in a massive virtual lineup. This has never been done for fingerprints or DNA. It’s uncharted and frankly dangerous territory.”

Whether they like it or not, about half of all Americans are pictured in a digital “perpetual line-up,” composed of databases handled either by the FBI or local police departments, the Center on Privacy & Technology at Georgetown Law Center finds in a new study published Tuesday.

According to “The Perpetual Line-Up: Unregulated Police Face Recognition in America,” about one in four police departments have access to face recognition technology, but only one of the 52 which acknowledged use of the software had legislative approval, the Miami Herald reported.

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