The FBI, or the Federal Bureau of Investigation, has been investing in facial recognition technology for some time now, and it seems as though they’ve implemented a new technology to catch the bad guys. The main idea behind facial recognition technology is to replace the fingerprint system and allow culprits to be identified through a facial recognition software from afar.
The FBI is calling its new facial recognition system the Next Generation Identification system. The software will work with the FBI’s individual database containing all the photos of known offenders and use that database to recognize culprits from video feeds and live. Besides recognizing known offender, the new facial recognition software the FBI has put 1 billion dollars into, can also identify ordinary law-abiding people through “Rap Back” when committing a crime.
Rap Back essentially sends the FBI status notifications about persons in high positions or positions of trust when they are caught committing a crime. The facial recognition tech used by the FBI is fully operational at the moment, but that doesn’t mean that it’s an accurate software. According to statistics, it’s only able to correctly recognize faces in the crowd 85% of the time, with the condition that a photo of the respective face is already in the FBI’s database.
Many are concerned about this new facial recognition technology the FBI is using because we’ve no information about where they get their photos from and there might be some serious privacy issues in the middle. Naturally, we’d assume they get their photos from mugshots, but that would mean that they could only identify people with criminal records or charges. Since the Rap Back program of the facial recognition software has nothing to do with previous offenders, the question automatically comes to mind: where’d you get that teacher’s photo from?
If the FBI takes their database photos from CVs, job applications, gaming platforms, social media. school yearbook or from a newspaper, we might be looking at a level of surveillance that might make most of us at least uncomfortable. Even though facial recognition would be a positive advancement in technology, it wouldn’t be for the benefit of the people if it violates our privacy in order to accomplish its goals. Do you think the FBI should be authorized to collect everybody’s portraits and use them in their facial recognition software? Do you think that would mean that they would monitor citizens all the time?