US law enforcement agencies have employed Clearview AI for close to one million searches.


Clearview AI, a facial recognition firm, has disclosed that it has conducted nearly one million searches on behalf of US law enforcement agencies.

The utilization of facial recognition technology raises significant concerns, and Clearview AI's technology enables authorities to upload a suspect's photo and locate matches within its extensive database of billions of collected images.
During an interview with the BBC, Clearview AI CEO Hoan Ton-That revealed that the company had scraped approximately 30 billion images from platforms like Facebook, without obtaining users' consent.

Despite facing repeated multi-million dollar fines in Europe and Australia for privacy breaches, US police continue to employ Clearview AI's powerful software.
Matthew Guaragilia from the Electronic Frontier Foundation highlighted that the use of Clearview AI by the police effectively places everyone under constant surveillance.
Although law enforcement often presents facial recognition usage as limited to serious or violent crimes, the Miami Police confirmed to the BBC that they employ Clearview AI's software for all types of offenses.

Miami's Assistant Chief of Police, Armando Aguilar, stated that his team uses Clearview AI's system around 450 times per year, citing its assistance in solving several murder cases.
However, there have been numerous documented instances of mistaken identity resulting from police use of facial recognition. One such case involved the wrongful arrest of Robert Williams on his own lawn in front of his family, where he was held overnight in an unsanitary cell.

Kate Ruane, Senior Legislative Counsel for the ACLU, pointed out the real dangers of facial recognition technology, citing studies and real-life incidents. She referred to the reintroduction of the Facial Recognition and Biometric Technology Moratorium Act, which aims to address these issues.
The lack of transparency regarding law enforcement's use of facial recognition technology likely means that the number of wrongful arrests resulting from its application is much higher than reported.

Civil rights advocates are calling for police departments using Clearview AI to openly disclose its usage and for the accuracy of the system to be subject to independent testing in court. They believe that the systems should be scrutinized by impartial experts.
The use of facial recognition technology by the police is a contentious subject, as it can aid in solving crimes but also encroaches upon civil liberties and privacy.

Balancing the use of technology to combat crime while safeguarding individual rights is a delicate task that requires careful navigation to prevent overstepping boundaries.