ICE, FBI reportedly scan driver's license photos for facial recognition searches – CNET

The use of facial recognition tech is already under way.

State databases of driver's licenses have reportedly become a treasure trove for facial recognition searches by the FBI and Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Millions of Americans' license photos have been scanned without their knowledge or consent, The Washington Post reported Sunday.

The Post based its article on five years of documents provided by Georgetown Law researchers. 

In a related report released last month, the Government Accountability Office noted that the FBI has logged over 390,000 facial recognition searches of federal and local databases since 2011, including states' motor vehicles department databases.

Neither Congress nor any state legislature has approved the use of such searches of DMV databases, the Post reported. 

The revelation of this massive informal system and the potential for more abuse of facial recognition technology led digital rights group, Fight for the Future, to demand an "all-out ban" on facial recognition technology. The group equates the technology to threats posed by nuclear and biological weapons. On its website, those who support a ban can fill out a form that will be sent to their local lawmakers. Fight for the Future didn't immediately respond for comment. 

Fight for the Future aren't the first activists to demand bans on government use of facial recognition tech. In May, both San Francisco, California and Somerville, Massachusetts passed ordinances banning facial recognition. 

ICE declined to comment on "investigative techniques, tactics or tools." The FBI didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.   

Originally published July 8 at 8:30 a.m. PT.
Update, 8:35 a.m.: Adds ICE's response. Update, July 9: Adds news about Fight for the Future group. 

ICE, FBI reportedly scan driver's license photos for facial recognition searches     - CNET

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