Met police deploy live facial recognition technology

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The below article has been taken from The Guardian, original article found here

The Metropolitan police have been accused of defying the warnings of its own watchdogs by beginning operational use of facial recognition CCTV, despite a scathing assessment of its effectiveness from the expert hired to scrutinise its trials.

On Tuesday, thousands of shoppers in east London were scanned by van-mounted cameras pointed at the doors of the Stratford Centre retail complex, in what a senior police officer at the scene described as an “intelligence-led” deployment.

Commander Mark McEwen, the Met’s lead on crime prevention, said Stratford had been chosen because it had been the scene of “public space violence”, and that there was support from the community for the police to use “whatever tactic we can to deal with violence”.

He said the face of each passerby was being scanned and checked against a watchlist of 5,000 biometric profiles of “people who are wanted for serious criminality, such as grievous bodily harm. There may be warrants [for their arrest], or they may be wanted by the courts, or they may be wanted by us for investigations.”

The new normal could mean a few things and prevention is better than the cure. From terrorist attacks to petty theft this technology will see a new way of detecting criminals. We believe the use of CCTV is going to help us all and can only make the world a better place.

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