The London Metropolitan Police announced this Friday the Use of facial recognition technology across the UK capital. The police ensure that the cameras “will be used intelligently”.
The use of the live facial recognition technology will take place in specific locations in London to help, says the police, “to deal with serious crime, including serious violence, firearms and knife crime, the sexual exploitation of children and the protection of vulnerable people”.
Officers deployed alongside the systems will be responsible for reporting on the use of facial recognition and deciding whether to identify potential suspects
Each of the operations that use the facial recognition cameras that have been tested during the last year are based on a tailored “watch list” that is composed of Images of wanted people, especially people who are searched for serious and violent crimes. The system will scan the faces of the passers-by and alert the deployed agents who will also inform the passers-by about the operations and detections that take place.
Facial recognition is a concern for many people
The announcement by the London Metropolitan Police comes as doubts and concerns about the privacy, dangers and effectiveness of this type of surveillance system continue as day one. For example, It is noteworthy that in almost three years of testing there were barely a dozen arrests and false positives exceeded 80%.
However, The London Metropolitan Police believe that this system can be “a fantastic crime-fighting tool” and believes that the technology is “tried and tested”.
It is also striking that this announcement is in the middle of the UK’s process of leaving the European Union and just a week later since from Brussels a guideline is raised to prohibits the use of facial recognition systems in public areas in the next three or five years. However, this idea raises exceptions such as security-related initiatives or research and development.
Privacy groups describe the announcement as a “serious threat to civil liberties in the UK” and have pledged to combat its implementation in the courts. Meanwhile, the London Metropolitan Police consider that this system can be a “fantastic crime-fighting tool” and believes that the technology is “tried and tested”.