Police force defends facial recognition tech after 2,000 fans were wrongly identified

2017 UEFA Champions League Final Host Stadium. Cardiff

A police power has defended its use of facial recognition expertise after it revealed the software program has made hundreds of errors.

Forward of the UEFA Champions League Remaining in Cardiff final June, South Wales Police introduced it will be utilizing cameras to scan faces within the crowds and evaluate them in opposition to a database of custody photos to establish potential troublemakers.

As 170,000 individuals descended on the Welsh capital for the sport between Actual Madrid and Juventus, 2,470 potential matches have been recognized.

Nevertheless, in line with knowledge on the power’s web site, 2,297 – 92% – have been discovered to be incorrect.

South Wales Police blamed the excessive variety of “false positives” on “poor high quality photos” provided by companies together with Uefa and Interpol, in addition to the very fact it was its first main use of the expertise.

It stated that “no facial recognition system is 100% correct” however that the expertise had led to greater than 450 arrests since its introduction.

The power additionally stated nobody had been arrested after an incorrect match.

Facial recognition technology test at Berlin Suedkreuz station
Civil liberty teams have criticised using the expertise

A South Wales Police spokesman stated: “Over 2,000 constructive matches have been made utilizing our ‘establish’ facial recognition expertise with over 450 arrests.

“Profitable convictions to date embody six years in jail for theft and four-and-a-half years imprisonment for housebreaking. The expertise has additionally helped establish weak individuals in occasions of disaster.

“Technical points are frequent to all face recognition programs, which suggests false positives can be a problem because the expertise develops.

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“Since preliminary deployments throughout the European Champions League Remaining in June 2017, the accuracy of the system utilized by South Wales Police has continued to enhance.”

Figures additionally revealed that 46 individuals have been wrongly recognized at an Anthony Joshua struggle, whereas there have been 42 false positives from a rugby match between Wales and Australia in November.

The power additionally stated it had thought-about privateness points “from the outset”, and had inbuilt checks to make sure its strategy was justified and proportionate.

Nevertheless, civil liberties marketing campaign group Huge Brother Watch criticised the expertise.

In a submit on Twitter, the group stated: “Not solely is real-time facial recognition a risk to civil liberties, it’s a dangerously inaccurate policing software.”

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