The Met Police in the UK has been carrying out facial recognition trials on the citizens of London, as a new technique for identifying criminals and, therefore, keep people safe.
However, some citizens are not happy with the conduct of the police, with many of them airing their views after a man was fined £90 for masking his face from the cameras.
Met Police UK Use Special Cameras for Facial Recognition Trials
The UK’s Met Police are running a facial recognition trial in East London. According to a report by Metro UK, the police have set up unique cameras that scan passers-by to help them find matches on criminal watch lists.
According to the Metro Police UK, Live Facial Recognition (LFR), is a technology that identifies people from digital images. The technology is helping the police prevent and detect crime by identifying wanted criminals. The images captured by the cameras are run through the LFR system database which contains a watch list of criminals wanted by the authorities for various offenses.
However, not everyone is happy about being scanned. In a video posted on Twitter, some citizens aired their views regarding this latest development. Some people value their privacy and didn’t want their faces to be captured by the camera.
So @metpoliceuk has been running facial recognition trials, with cameras scanning passers-by. A man who covered himself when passing by the cameras was fined £90 for disorderly behaviour and forced to have his picture taken anyway. pic.twitter.com/GG4Cwb95PV
— Ragnar Weilandt (@RagnarWeilandt) May 15, 2019
A man covered his face while walking past the facial recognition cameras. However, the police apprehended him and took a picture of him despite his protests. The man pointed out that he has the right to cover his face is he wants to, a view that many people share. A police officer at the scene, Ivan Balhatchet stated that the man was apprehended for masking his face from the recognition cameras while walking by.
He was fined £90 for disorderly behavior afterward. On that day alone, three arrests were made thanks to the facial recognition trial. Balhatchet revealed that they are using the technology to see how it can keep people safer and make policing more effective.
He added that while there are concerns regarding the facial recognition trails, what they are trying to do is to understand the concerns better as this would allow them to protect human rights and keep people safe at the same time.
Facial Recognition Has Too Many Flaws
Privacy rights group Big Brother Watch is advocating that facial recognition technology should be dropped after it was revealed that the software has too many problems to gain widespread adoption comfortably.
Documents obtained from the police, Home Office, and university researchers revealed that technology could falsify the identity of black and minority ethnic people. This glitch by the facial recognition technology is a significant concern for those worried about it, with most of them calling for the software to be dropped immediately.
Recently, the legislators in San Francisco voted to ban the use of the technology by local authorities, making it the first state in the US to make such a move. Those in support of the ban claimed that the software is unreliable in its current state, adding that it also infringes on people’s privacy.