In a blog post published Wednesday, the ACLU issued a warning about recent developments regarding a patent application filed by Amazon, which would use facial recognition, like Rekognition, in conjunction with the doorbell camera company Ring.
The patent says the tech would be a "powerful deterrent against would-be burglars," however, the ACLU is warning that it would create a "massive decentralized surveillance network." Basically, the device would scan the face of a person, and possibly other biometrics like "fingerprints, skin-texture analysis, DNA, palm-vein analysis, hand geometry, iris recognition, odor/scent recognition, and even behavioral characteristics," to figure out if they were "suspicious." If a person who walked by the doorbell camera was flagged, the information would then be sent to the police. The device would be able to scan through not only police databases but databases created by owners of the device. The ACLU warns that the technology sounds an awful like "authoritarian surveillance that advocates, activists, community leaders, politicians, and experts have repeatedly warned against."
Head over to the ACLU to read more about it all.
Amazon has recently been side-stepping questions about the company working with the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). When pressed about their possible ties by Buzzfeed News, Amazon’s vice president for public policy Brian Huseman responded, "We provide our Rekognition service to a variety of government agencies, and we think that the federal government should have access to the best available technology..."