The FBI's $1 Billion Face Recognition Project Proceeding as Scheduled

The FBI's $1 billion Next Generation Identification (NGI) programme is proceeding on schedule and should be fully launched by 2014. It's already in use in several states as test pilots, including Michigan, Hawaii, Maryland, and possibly Oregon.

NGI expands the FBI’s IAFIS criminal and civil fingerprint database to include multimodal biometric identifiers such as iris scans, palm prints, face-recognition-ready photos, and voice data, and makes that data available to other agencies at the state and federal levels.

The FBI page for the program is here. Here is a handy powerpoint on it from the 2010 Biometrics Conference. Here are the uses the FBI envisions for it: [More...]

  • Identifying fugitives and missing persons in FR systems
  • Identifying unknown persons of interest from images (1:N)
  • Tracking subjects movements to/from critical events (e.g., 9/11)
  • Conducting automated surveillance at lookout locations
  • Identifying subjects in public datasets
  • Identifying subjects from images in seized systems
  • Verifying mug shots against National Criminal Information Center (NCIC) records (1:1)
  • Controlling access

Here's one graphic in the FBI powerpoint:

Some ideas:

With Halloween not far away, now might be a good time to stock up on these:

Just don't forget long sleeves and gloves to hide the tattoos and shapes of your fingers.

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  • Display: Sort:
    I find it horrifying (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by sj on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 09:37:12 AM EST
    Sure, I see the potential for using it for "good", but in that context it will likely be similar to DNA evidence for exoneration.  Because, as we've learned, actual innocence doesn't necessarily guarantee justice.  More likely it will move us ever closer to that police state.  

    Or are we there already?  

    "Trust Us" (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 10:35:14 AM EST
    It would be really nice if the FBI listed ALL the reasons for the technology, not just the ones that make us feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

    I would also like to know how accurate it is with an outside firm doing some real world testing.  I would like to know where it's going to be used and what other government agencies will be using the data collected.  Basically, I would like some truth, not a GD PowerPoint sales pitch.

    I guess it never occurs to them that the vast people they will be identifying and tracking have never done anything wrong and don't particularly like the idea of the government tracking them because they are having difficulties doing the jobs we pay them to do.  

    Just seems like being able to identify me, then link it to various databases and basically finding my entire history is an unreasonable search of some kind.  I would like to think there is a valid reason for for this collection of personal data, not just an all encompassing net supposedly looking for criminals.  I don't like the current assumption that because technology requires less effort, it is someone not bound to the Constitution.

    My feeling (5.00 / 2) (#11)
    by lentinel on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 11:50:39 AM EST
    is that this technology is going to be used to suppress dissent.

    Agreed. (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by Chuck0 on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 12:31:28 PM EST
    Also agree (none / 0) (#15)
    by sj on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 01:27:53 PM EST
    So, what are they going to do about (5.00 / 2) (#9)
    by Zorba on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 11:45:06 AM EST
    Muslim women in burqas?  Or maybe we should all start wearing one when going out, men included........

    This (5.00 / 2) (#10)
    by lentinel on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 11:45:27 AM EST
    surveillance stuff gives me the willies.

    When they say, "Tracking subjects movements to/from critical events" - I ask, what is a "critical event" according to these guys?

    The example given is 9/11. But that would be after the fact.

    What I suspect a "critical event" will be for them is something like an antiwar demonstration.

    I feel so safe.

    Is it just me? (none / 0) (#1)
    by DebFrmHell on Sun Sep 09, 2012 at 11:34:37 PM EST
    I think that the technology is pretty freaking awesome! And they are having a conference here in mid-November!  You can bet I will be on the schedule for work that week...

    I've worked with developers of these (none / 0) (#2)
    by ruffian on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 06:40:26 AM EST
    types of systems, from their baby steps in the early 90's. It is impressive.  Of course I would like it used for good rather than evil...we'll see how that goes. I hope that, like DNA testing, it can be used to clear the innocent as well as catch the guilty.

    The first step will be legally protecting cops (none / 0) (#3)
    by Mr Natural on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 08:06:34 AM EST
    who beat to the ground anybody IDed, rightly or more particularly, wrongly, by these system.

    SITE VIOLATOR??? (none / 0) (#7)
    by Anne on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 11:00:12 AM EST
    Looks like a lame attempt at spam; seems like a lot of that kind of activity today, for some reason.

    Maybe they're all (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by Zorba on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 11:42:17 AM EST
    sending coded messages to one another, using the Talk Left website.  
    Perhaps we should notify the FBI.    ;-)

    Hey! (none / 0) (#13)
    by DebFrmHell on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 12:44:15 PM EST
    At least they can't "see" us!

    But....but.... (5.00 / 1) (#14)
    by Zorba on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 01:08:49 PM EST
    How do we know they can't?   ;-)