Face recognition software used to check for criminals on holiday

After committing a great crime the stereotypical criminal will then jet away to a foreign or far away place where they couldn't possibly be identified by local law enforcement. If the unwitting lawbreaker chooses to go to Virginia Beach, however, they're in for a nasty surprise.

Now computers are behind the surveillance cameras, watching using sophisticated face-recognition software. The system was deployed last September and it only keeps images of people if they are matched by the software with known criminals or runaways. The database which contains the data necessary for the recognition software to work is updated daily, and a minimum of three cameras are linked up to the system permanently.

The use of such means to find the less scrupulous members of society isn't used nationwide across the US yet, but if it was civil liberty campaigners would have a field day. The critics of the system claim it doesn't work well and could easily mistake an innocent person for a criminal, and according to the America Civil Liberties Union "Face recognition is all hype and no action". Using such a system is unquestionably a move toward a "Big Brother" society but if it helps make the streets safer is it something we could live with?

News source: ZDNet

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