#25
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Face Value #25

  • Need for national law
  • FR and “phrenology”
  • Contactless society
  • Sub-Saharan Africa
Published every Thursday

NextGov

Facial Recognition Is Here But We Have No Laws

Without legal safeguards, this technology will undermine democratic values and fundamental rights.

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NBC News

Google, Amazon, and Microsoft hold thousands of contracts with the U.S. military and federal law enforcement, new research shows

Over the past two years, thousands of tech company employees have taken a stand: they do not want their labor and technical expertise to be used for projects with the military or law enforcement agencies.

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Editor’s Note:

Recent discussions over facial recognition and policing have highlighted ties between tech companies and governments, on levels from local to federal. Here April Glaser looks at a new report highlighting ties to law enforcement and the U.S. military.

Aeon

Facial recognition technologies echo the historical problem of linking appearance with criminality

Such artificial intelligence systems deepen racial and ethnic baises.

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Biometric Update

Temperature monitoring systems with contactless biometrics continue to roll out worldwide

Access control technologies, often with biometric facial recognition capabilities, continue to be upgraded with body temperature scanning sensors to meet the guidelines from official bodies like state governments and the Centers for Disease Control to identify and deny entry to people with fevers. New hardware or software products have been launched by Janam, Temperature Check, Samola Systems and Patriot One. Meanwhile VPR Brands has struck a distribution deal, and a Green Packet subsidiary, eConnect, Global Security Devices and Purview Services have announced deployments.

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Philadelphia Inquirer

How COVID-19 is accelerating the shift to a cashless society

Tom Ivory, the founder of the Baker Street Bread Co. in Chestnut Hill, fought a valiant effort for years to rein in bank fees by imposing a minimum credit card purchase of $10. But more customers wanted to go cashless, and Ivory eventually relented and accepted plastic for any transaction, no matter how small.

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Editor’s Note:

Beyond the big changes, COVID worries are switching up things on the small scale, like how you pay at a shop. This piece out of Philadelphia looks at all the ways things are going contactless, including with facial recognition.

Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting

Face Recognition Risks Chilling Our Ability to Participate in Free Speech

Janine Jackson: Robert Williams, an African-American man in Detroit, was falsely arrested when an algorithm declared his face a match with security footage of a watch store robbery. Boston City Council voted recently to ban the city’s use of facial recognition technology, part of an effort to move resources from law enforcement to community, but also out of concern about dangerous mistakes like that in Williams’ case, along with questions about what the technology means for privacy and free speech. As more and more people go out in the streets and protest, what should we know about this powerful tool, and the rules — or lack thereof — governing its use?

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Slate

Can a Police Drone Recognize Your Face?

Sometimes it matters less if you’re being surveilled than if you feel like you are.

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One Zero (Medium)

Portland’s Radical Facial Recognition Proposal Bans the Tech From Airbnbs, Restaurants, Stores, and More

After eight months of speculation, details are finally emerging about Portland, Oregon’s groundbreaking legislation that would ban facial recognition in privately owned businesses and spaces accessible to the public.

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Institute for Security Studies

Future of facial recognition technology in Africa

When several United States (US) companies withdrew their facial recognition software products amid concerns about flaws, biases and misuse in the wake of the killing of George Floyd, did leaders in sub-Saharan Africa take note? Have events in the US served as a clarion call for governments to ensure that regulations are in place before the rollout of what many see as one of the most intrusive forms of surveillance?

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Editor’s Note:

Different countries are looking to each other as they address issues such as privacy and facial recognition. Here Karen Allen uses discussions in the US as a starting point to talk about the state of things in sub-Saharan Africa.

CNN

Amazon and Microsoft stopped working with police on facial recognition. For others it’s still big business

Amazon and Microsoft stopped working with police on facial recognition. For others it’s still big business

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