EFF says TSA facial recognition proposal part of dangerous overreach

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has issued a “call to action” over a proposal by the U.S. Transportation Safety Authority (TSA) to collect facial images and iris scans under the PreCheck application program, which the EFF says paves the way for “a massive violation of privacy” by the Department of Homeland Security. As previously reported, the TSA ran a pilot project over the summer to evaluate the use of fingerprints by travellers as a boarding pass and identity document at

Privacy group EFF pens letter opposing border surveillance bill

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) penned a letter to the federal government in opposition of a new federal bill that would significantly expand biometrics collection and other surveillance of both American citizens and immigrants at and near the U.S. border, following Sen. Cornyn’s (R-TX) introduction of S. 1757 (Building America’s Trust Act) in August. The group’s letter objects to several provisions of the bill, starting with a provision that would require the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to collect biometric

Ekin Technology granted patent for all-in-one LPR, speedometer, and facial recognition scanner

Turkey’s Ekin Technology was recently granted a U.S. patent for a light bar with an integrated license plate reader (LPR), speedometer, and facial recognition capability, according to a report on Ars Technica. Agencies ranging from the FBI to the California attorney general’s office have expressed their interest in the “Ekin Patrol” technology but privacy advocates are concerned. “The facial recognition equivalent of license plate reader scanning has always been a civil liberties nightmare,” Jay Stanley, an analyst at the American

Privacy advocates concerned as SDPD ramps up use of facial recognition technology

San Diego police agencies are doubling up on the use of facial recognition devices to identify suspects in the field and with more than twice as many cameras deployed as last year, privacy advocates are concerned. Officers use mobile devices to take photos of suspects and then facial recognition software compares the photos against a countywide mug shot database. Recently uncovered records show taxpayers paid more than $540,000 to fund facial recognition in San Diego County since the program’s inception.

Police using DNA familial matches to investigate capital crimes

According to a recent article in Wired Magazine, your relative’s DNA could turn you into a suspect. With the advent of highly detailed and accessible genetic databases, police forces can now search for DNA samples that are extremely similar, but which are not identical, to an unknown perpetrator. Utilizing this technique, law enforcement officials can attempt to analyze familial matches in DNA databases, in order to seek out other family members who are the real suspects of a crime. The

Biometrics on the move, facial recognition, biometric payment options, fraud prevention & more top news

Here’s a recap of the most popular biometrics industry news that appeared on BiometricUpdate.com this past week. Universal ID management report Accenture and the World Bank released a report to help developing nations create universal ID management system, which notes that over 1.8 billion adults in developing countries currently lack an official ID and therefore have no access to essential services. Voice authentication for retailers In a special guest post, Enacomm founder and CEO Michael Boukadakis emphasized the importance of

Biometrics and law enforcement, new SIBA CEO, identity as a service and more top stories

Here’s a recap of the most popular biometrics industry news that appeared on BiometricUpdate.com this past week. SIBA appoints new CEO In what is arguably one of the biggest biometrics stories this week, Secure Identity & Biometrics Association (SIBA) appointed former Raytheon executive Michael T. Dougherty as the organization’s new Chief Executive Officer. Law enforcement The FBI has recently expanded its biometrics programs with two major developments that will reportedly impact Americans on a day to day level more than

FBI dramatically expanding biometrics programs: EFF

The FBI has expanded its biometrics programs with two major developments that will reportedly impact Americans on a day to day level more than any other biometrics initiative the national law enforcement agency has previously implemented, according to a report by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). The first change, which the FBI revealed quietly earlier this year in a Privacy Impact Assessment (PIA), is the consolidation of civil and criminal fingerprints into a single searchable database. As such, all fingerprints

Alleged misuse of facial recognition software by San Diego police raises public concerns

The San Diego Police Department is using facial recognition software with few guidelines and little public disclosure, which has led to public concerns about privacy and potential misuse of the technology, according to a report by The New York Times. The facial recognition software is able to identify 16,000 points on an individual’s face and compare them with thousands of similar points in mug shots or other photos at a rate of more than one million faces a second. Although

EFF, MuckRock conduct census of how police deploy mobile biometric technologies

EFF and MuckRock have partnered to conduct a census of sorts, via public records requests, in an effort to compile a central list that shows which police agencies throughout the country have mobile biometric identification devices, as well as a set of guidelines for how they should be used. The “Street Level Surveillance” initiative is intended to provide greater transparency into which biometric technologies police are using, how they are using them, how accurate they are, and what policies are