Federal agencies use facial recognition from private companies, but almost nobody is keeping track

Federal agencies use facial recognition from private companies, but almost nobody is keeping track


Illustration by James Bareham / The Verge

A new report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has revealed near-total lack of accountability from federal agencies using facial recognition built by private companies, like Clearview AI.

Of the 14 federal agencies that said they used privately built facial recognition for criminal investigations, only Immigration and Customs Enforcement was in the process of implementing a list of approved facial recognition vendors and a log sheet for the technology’s use.

The rest of the agencies, including Customs and Border Protection, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Drug Enforcement Administration, had no process in place to track the use of private facial recognition.

This GAO report greatly expands the public’s…

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