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Police To Trial New Facial Recognition System

British police are set to trial a facial recognition system that will be able to detect your mood through CCTV footage.

Lincolnshire Police intend to use the system to search CCTV footage in order to find people wearing articles of clothing, such as hats and sunglasses, or displaying signs of particular moods.

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Photo by: Stephen Melkisethian

They were given a grant by the Home Office to trial the system in the market town of Gainsborough. However, ethical considerations have slowed the progress of the trial.

A police spokesperson said that the footage will be deleted after 31 days and that the police force will carry out a human rights and ethical assessment before the trial commences.

Even so, critics fear that this will be too great an infringement on one’s privacy.

“There’s a huge amount of money from the Home Office for this technology and they’re getting themselves into legal trouble, breaching human rights and expanding state surveillance while no one is watching,” said Silkie Carlo, director of civil liberties group Big Brother Watch.

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It is currently unknown exactly how this technology will work, either in terms of communication from the police or in terms of scientific research. This has caused groups to initiate a campaign to ban the technology, such as the research institute AI Now, who called for a ban back in 2019.