Thirty-one civil society organisations are calling on the federal government to ban facial recognition cameras.
The group, which incorporates Amnesty Worldwide, Liberty and Privateness Worldwide, has accused police and the Dwelling Workplace of bypassing parliament over steering permitting police, native councils and enforcement businesses to make use of facial recognition throughout England and Wales in defiance of courtroom rulings towards invasive filming.
The steering was revealed final week by the Faculty of Policing in the course of the parliamentary recess and with none announcement, in response to The Day by day Telegraph.
It got here regardless of a Court docket of Attraction ruling that the usage of facial recognition cameras by South Wales Police as a pilot scheme forward of a nationwide rollout breached privateness rights and broke equalities regulation, the group’s letter mentioned.
“In a democratic society, it’s crucial that intrusive applied sciences are topic to efficient scrutiny,” the letter mentioned.
“Police and the Dwelling Workplace have, up to now, utterly bypassed parliament on the matter of LFRT (dwell facial recognition know-how).
“We’re not conscious of any intention to topic LFRT plans to parliamentary consideration, regardless of the intrusiveness of this know-how, its extremely controversial use over a variety of years, and the risks related to its use.”
The group mentioned it feared LFRT “could also be utilized in a broad vary of public gatherings” similar to sporting occasions, music live shows, and protests, threatening protected rights.
“Additional, deployments of this surveillance know-how might mirror and exacerbate present disproportionate policing practices in the direction of minority communities.”
The group mentioned it was “calling on parliament and related stakeholders to halt and ban the usage of dwell facial recognition know-how by the police and personal corporations completely, because it poses vital and unmitigable dangers to our society”.
“We don’t consider that LFRT can ever be safely deployed in public areas and for mass surveillance functions.”
The letter mentioned the usage of facial recognition know-how “represents an enormous shift within the relationship between the person and the state”.
“The implications come not solely from privateness and knowledge safety views, however from the bigger moral query for a democratic society allowing and seemingly condoning the rollout of such intrusive know-how.
“LFRT additionally raises vital issues for our human rights, similar to freedom of expression and freedom of meeting.”
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