Home Office body takes evidence on ethics of police use of facial recognition
Department’s Biometrics and Forensics Ethics Group seeks input from various parties
An arm’s-length body of the Home Office is to gather evidence on the ethics of police forces working with private companies on the use of live facial recognition (LFR) technology.
The department’s Biometrics and Forensics Ethics Group is seeking input on the topic from manufacturers, as well as past, current and potential users of the technology across both the public and commercial sector. This may include “councils, landowners, and police or security forces”.
- No changes needed to legal framework for facial recognition, minister claims
- London man hit with £90 fine after covering face in front of police facial-recognition cameras
- ICO probes King’s Cross facial recognition
The BFEG has already undertaken an evidence-gathering exercise with civil liberties groups and regulators, and now wishes to canvass opinion from users and tech firms at an event to be held in central London on 30 April.
Attendees will be asked submit either written or oral evidence. Applications to attend or otherwise contribute are open until 17 April. Anyone wishing to do so is invited to email BFEG.
The use of LFR has been in focus recently after London’s Metropolitan Police Service announced that the technology would be put into live operational use at various locations around the city. The rollout in the capital follows a number of trials of facial recognition in various parts of the country, and a high-court ruling that found that an earlier use by South Wales Police had been lawful.
However, a committee of the Scottish Parliament reported last month that LFR is “currently not fit for use” by officers north of the border.
Minister says mandating isolation is ‘right course of action’
Force in Scotland says process will help ‘address any ethical and community-related concerns’
Government considering launching online tool – but not in time for upcoming polls
Venues in Scotland will be able to conduct trials with juries based in cinemas or other offsite locations