The privacy paranoid among us have long worried that all of our online photos would be scraped to create a universal face recognition app. My friends, it happened and it’s here
EXCLUSIVE: With a single photo, hundreds of law enforcement agencies in the U.S. can learn your name, where you live, and who you know. It will end your ability to walk down the street anonymously.
Massive, holy shit-level “caught with their hand in the cookie jar” moment 10 paragraphs into this NY Times piece about Clearview’s facial recognition work for law enforcement:
Many stories on tech can be overblown. Not this one though I have seen this app in use and it 100% works and is even more disconcerting than description here Global facial recognition doesn’t exist only because of social norms rn. The tech is trivial
Bloody hell. 600 law enforcement agencies have been quietly using a face recognition app that has scraped 3bn images from YouTube, Facebook, Venmo and other sites - 's latest
Clearview says 600 law enforcement agencies are using its app. Detectives tell me it's amazing. When the founder took a photo of me while I covered my nose & mouth, it still worked, returning 7 photos of me, one 10 years old. It's insane. Read the story
. got to see first hand how it works. When police officers ran a photo of her through the app, they soon received calls from Clearview asking if they were talking to the media. Read her investigation
The major takeaway from my story on a crazy new face recognition app is this quote.
Ban both gov and private use of facial recognition Peter Theil-backed company scraped millions' of people's biometric data off the web (Facebook, Flickr, etc). Used it to create a face rec system allowing cops (soon others) to ID any of us, w/o suspicion
This piece ⁦ by ⁦ underscores that any exclusion in #privacy legislation for “publicly available” data needs to be narrow. . Big difference between wholesale scraping⁩ and vetted and accountable databases like e.g. Census data.
You want to READ THIS. Even as many of us are fighting racial bias in law enforcement, private companies have been allowed to access our data, monetize it and share it w/ law enforcement. We need emergency regulation to protect our privacy.
Exclusive: Hundreds of law enforcement agencies (incl and ) have quietly started using a facial-recognition program that ends your ability to walk down the street anonymously. It's funded by and has links to alt-right. by
Researchers have objected that using bots to scrape information in bulk from, say, Facebook could be deemed a felony. If there were ever a case to make, though, this is it: a company snatching 3 billion photos to build a service to identify any stranger.
Fascinating article about a secretive facial recognition company funded by Peter Thiel, and used by police -- whose investors literally say that it's all fine because it's not illegal to create "future dystopia." Written by the incomparable
This should TERRIFY you. We have arrived at the dystopian future: all aboard!.
“Absent a very strong federal privacy law, we’re all screwed.”
. intro'ing legislation to ban facial recognition by law enforcement, seemingly in response to / expose on the practice.
Hot take: A criminal justice system that uses this technology effectively to guarantee crime goes solved and perps go to prison could be a win from everyone's perspective. You trade length of sentence for certainty and swiftness of punishment.
It’s because of an app called Clearview. With a database of more than 3 billion images scraped from Facebook, YouTube, Venmo and other sources, it goes far beyond anything built by the U.S. government or Silicon Valley’s giants.
I don’t know if this a hot take or not but I’m of the strong opinion that there should be a ban on facial recognition technology.
This is disgusting. A Sanders administration will ban facial recognition software in law enforcement, period.
A facial recognition vendor has scraped three billion images for its database by scraping social media like Venmo, LinkedIn, and Facebook. Its quietly selling that data to police agencies in the US.
A Peter Thiel backed app allows cops to match images of unknown people against 3b photos scraped from the public internet, connected to profiles, addresses, names, etc.
Even if you've grown indifferent to privacy concerns these days (or you just assume that tech companies are tracking everything we do no matter what) this is still pretty shocking. Tremendous reporting by
GAH: The super-facial recognition system Clearview was also founded by Richard Schwartz—an aide to Giuliani when he was mayor—and backed financially by Peter Thiel.
this is one of the most important articles i've read in some time
Clearview facial recognition app should be the target of a class-action copyright lawsuit
I think what struck me the most in this excellent piece is that Clearview AI just brazenly broke the terms of service of major social networks to build their database. What will be the repercussions be? Genie seems like it’s out of the bottle now
There are so many jaw-dropping moments in this feature on law enforcement’s use of face recognition tech from the secretive company Clearview AI (backed by Peter Thiel!) And the reporting goes so deep. I have reporter’s envy. Everyone go read it
"Until this week, I had not heard of Clearview AI," Gurbir Grewal, New Jersey’s attorney general, said in an interview. "I was troubled." Read the full investigation on Clearview AI from
These guys scraped social media and created a smartphone app for facial recognition. "Sure, that might lead to a dystopian future or something, but you can’t ban it" "Clearview’s investors predict that its app will eventually be available to the public"
A major takeaway from 's incredible story. Ethically-dubious companies have had the ability to create facial recognition tech on a terrifyingly vast scale for years. They haven't done so because even they recognized it was too evil
Someone finally put together an internet image scraper with facial recognition, building a searchable database of billions. Probably inevitable--I've speculated about it for years, as have others--& China basically has it already, but still unsettling. 1/x
Peter Thiel, the co-founder of Palantir, invested in this mass facial recognition app. Cops and ICE use this to target immigrants. We need to ban facial recognition right now.
Clearview AI's facial recognition app goes far beyond anything ever constructed by the U.S. government or Silicon Valley giants
Today’s front page uses #FOIA’s to dig into the “Secretive Company That Might End Privacy as We Know”
epic ⁦⁩ story on facial recognition
"Sure, that might lead to a dystopian future or something, but you can’t ban it.” -- David Scalzo, head of private equity firm that invested in Clearview I don't follow this logic.
“Absent a very strong federal privacy law, we’re all screwed.”
Very scary. Created by an Australian in the US who doesn’t seem to know what he’s unleashing into the world
"With database of more than three billion images that Clearview claims to have scraped from Facebook, YouTube, Venmo and millions of other websites — (app) goes far beyond anything ever constructed by the United States government or Silicon Valley giants."
A disturbing use of facial recognition tech from a start-up in lower Manhattan. My recommendation: replace your profile photos with adversarial images
When we talk about (and teach) web archives we must talk about this
Not mentioned in this amazing and terrifying investigation: wrote and reported it all while 8 months pregnant.
“I don’t see a future where we harness the benefits of face recognition technology without the crippling abuse of the surveillance that comes with it. The only way to stop it is to ban it.” for
Clearview AI (backed by a former Giuliani aide, Peter Thiel & a host of dodgy Republicans) ‘could identify activists at a protest or an attractive stranger on the subway, revealing not just their names but where they lived, what they did & whom they knew.’
I retweeted on this earlier, but it’s worth repeating: this is a crucial article. The facial recognition flashpoint is already here, and barring federal legislation, soon, I’m not sure the genie can be put back in the bottle
Big Brother startup - The secretive facial recognition company that has been scraping the photos you post online, reducing them to a mathematical formula, and letting police departments search their database for a fee. ⁦
"Clearview... users would potentially be able to identify every person they saw. The tool could identify activists at a protest or an attractive stranger on the subway, revealing not just their names but where they lived, what they did and whom they knew."
A look at Clearview AI, a facial recognition app claiming it scraped 3B+ images from sites like Facebook, YouTube, and that 600+ law enforcement agencies use it ( / New York Times)
In California & communities across the US, decisions to block face surveillance are being made through the democratic process, not by police or app makers acting alone. Expect more progress in the wake of this piece.
"Clearview AI, devised a groundbreaking facial recognition app. You take a picture of a person, upload it and get to see public photos of that person, along with links to where those photos appeared"
If you haven't read 's latest, on the worst fears realized of unbridled tech and facial recognition, take today to do so. There seems to be nothing that writes that does not fill me with envy and wonder
This is terrifying.
Welcome back from your holiday weekend! If you avoided Twitter for the last 3 days, many congrats. Now that you're back, if you follow me, it's probably because you want to know when I write a story like this one
And if you haven't already, please read 's piece on the company from this weekend. It sucks being scooped, but if it's going to be anyone, I hope it's Kash.
"It’s creepy what they’re doing, but there will be many more of these companies. There is no monopoly on math. Absent a very strong federal privacy law, we’re all screwed"
Thinking about a future defined by these technologies - developed, sold, and used without regard for the moral collateral damage - I can only echo Eleanor Shellstrop, upon hearing a brief audio clip of The Bad Place: "Well, it doesn't sound *awesome*"
The Secretive Company That Might End Privacy as We Know It. CC: Technodystopian Future
A face recognition article in the NYT is going viral. Face recognition is the wrong target of outrage. It should be 1) a huge face database that was obtained illegally & without consent, and 2) a government that uses an illegal tool, apparently clueless.
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times...we can’t seem to use our evolutionary super power: being able to reason to rise over such via #Identity #Privacy community we must make faster progress on #VerifiedCredentials
A great yarn by from the Wild West frontier of facial recognition.
The panopticon is here. In the United States. What are you going to do about it?
Big Tech is becoming a bigger threat to privacy than Big Government. Here, they work together to extinguish your anonymity.
Clearview AI - The Secretive Company That Might End Privacy as We Know It: A little-known start-up helps law enforcement match photos of unknown people to their online images — and “might lead to a dystopian future or something,” via
NYTimes: The Secretive Company That Might End Privacy as We Know It The Secretive Company That Might End Privacy as We Know It Incredibly dangrous development - will have to stop using and other social media.
Another great privacy story by . I've seen some responding to this story by calling for a ban on LE use of facial recognition. I think that's the wrong reaction. This technology is incredibly useful. (cont)
Clearview's creepy facial rec tech is a v good example of the fork we face on the road to the 20s: do we care whether the tech works, or do we care whether it should even be allowed in the first place? And if not, why?
“Absent a very strong federal privacy law, we’re all screwed.” says Prof Al Gidari of #FacialRecognition app via ⁩ ⁦⁩ ⁦⁩ ⁦⁩ ⁦⁩ ⁦⁦
oh cool. “One of the odder pitches, in late 2017, was to Paul Nehlen — an anti-Semite and self-described “pro-white” Republican running for Congress in Wisconsin — to use “unconventional databases” for “extreme opposition research”
Super-powerful facial recognition app with 3 billion photos company “scraped” (stole) off Facebook & elsewhere, now used by FBI & Homeland Security & hundreds of police departments. We need legislation to regulate it and its inevitable copycats ASAP. 1/2
“Sure, that might lead to a dystopian future or something, but you can’t ban it.” Astonishing must read piece on Clearview AI, the $7m start up providing real time facial recognition surveillance of everyone.
Remember when Facebook told Congress it had to build shadow profiles of everyone for security purposes, to prevent mass scraping? Well here’s how well that worked out
Machine learning is the new database. Things that were always theoretically possible on a small scale are now practically possible on a national scale
3 billion facial photos taken from Facebook, etc. to power a facial recognition app, built a guy who ran an app that lets you swap the hair in your photo for Donald Trump's.
This is extraordinary. App that can identify faces by matching to database of billions of scraped FB images. Now being used by US law-enforcement, to id suspects. But, enormous potential for misuse by governments or private companies.
Surveillance dystopia ⁦
Techno-utopians: stop fear mongering Conservative billionaires: here's a start-up we've been secretly working on which signifies the end of privacy as you know it. The app helps law enforcement match photos of unknown people to their online images.
"Until now, technology that readily identifies everyone based on his or her face has been taboo because of its radical erosion of privacy. Tech companies capable of releasing such a tool have refrained from doing so." Be scared. Be very scared.
i keep hearing how face recognition is the end of privacy, but yandex has had face search for a year.. are there any articles about fallout from that? maybe it’s only scary when it’s built in california?
“The Secretive Company That Might End Privacy as We Know It“ a) deliberately mass scrapping, hoarding & using — here: even selling!! — someone’s data w/o consent should be illegal. Like stalking; meaning, you can do sth doesn’t make it ok 1/2
The Secretive Company That Might End Privacy as We Know It. A little-known start-up helps law enforcement match photos of unknown people to their online images — and “might lead to a dystopian future or something,” a backer says
Breathtaking: “It’s creepy what they’re doing, but there will be many more of these companies. There is no monopoly on math,” said Al Gidari, a privacy professor at Stanford Law School. “Absent a very strong federal privacy law, we’re all screwed.”
So the idea of privacy as ownership that cannot be breached wo consent has been on its way out since the 90s; privacy now means the ability to grow capacity while privatizing costs.
A little-known start-up helps law enforcement match photos of unknown people to their online images — and “might lead to a dystopian future or something,” a backer says.
“The Secretive Company That Might End Privacy as We Know It”
The only thing shocking to me would be if this was the only company doing this. Facial recognition at scale is largely a solved problem. h/t
In which ⁦⁩ turns over a rock and finds a monster — why privacy is so difficult to protect with terms of service.
Jamais 's idea of the Participatory Panopticon realized, and it is terrifying
Yes, you can “ban” technology, its called regulation
Destination Dystopia.
End of privacy is nigh.
Terrifying tech advance takes us yet another step closer to Orwell's "1984"- & really very far beyond. If your face exists anywhere on the internet, Big Brother can now identify you even in the largest crowd. Perfect tool for a repressive dictatorship.
The Secretive Company That Might End Privacy as We Know It
Welcome to the dystopian future. | The Secretive Company That Might End Privacy as We Know It
“Absent a very strong federal privacy law, we’re all screwed.” via
The blockbuster #clearview AI story was broken initially by an #OpenGov #transparency NGO in the US & great example of the powerful yet too often underplayed links between the #opengov, #privacy and the #AI accountability communities. Onwards!
A little-known start-up helps law enforcement match photos of unknown people to their online images — and "might lead to a dystopian future."
The Secretive Company That Might End Privacy as We Know It, By Kashmir Hill ⁦⁩ / ⁦
I have concerns about the privacy and accuracy issues with this app. “But it is unclear how often the tool delivers false matches, because it has not been tested by an independent party such as the National Institute of Standards and Technology...” #AI
The Secretive Company That Might End Privacy as We Know It #sociology
This is scary and amazing at the same time. Facial recognition app based on (illegally) scraped social media images. In use by law enforcement & very effective. via
As with surveillance cameras, private companies have gone way past what any government effort could have done.
"Sure, that might lead to a dystopian future or something, but you can’t ban it" "Clearview’s investors predict that its app will eventually be available to the public" "The system...scraped from Facebook, YouTube, Venmo and millions of other websites"
The Secretive Company That Might End Privacy as We Know It
Unbelievable //The Secretive Company That Might End Privacy as We Know It
'A little-known start-up helps law enforcement match photos of unknown people to their online images — and “might lead to a dystopian future or something,” a backer says'
The Secretive Company That Might End Privacy as We Know It