Clearview AI is on monitor to obtain a US patent for its facial recognition expertise, in accordance with a report from Politico. The corporate was reportedly despatched a “discover of allowance” by the US Patent and Trademark Workplace, which signifies that as soon as it pays the required administration charges, its patent might be formally accepted.
Clearview AI builds its facial recognition database utilizing photos of those who it scrapes throughout social media (and the web typically), a observe that has the corporate steeped in controversy. The corporate’s patent application particulars its use of a “internet crawler” to accumulate photos, even noting that “on-line images related to an individual’s account could assist to create further information of facial recognition information factors,” which its machine studying algorithm can then use to search out and establish matches.
Critics argue that Clearview AI’s facial recognition expertise is a violation of privateness and that it might negatively impression minority communities. The expertise is allegedly less accurate when identifying people of color and women, doubtlessly resulting in false arrests when utilized by regulation enforcement companies.
Final yr, the corporate mentioned that its expertise was used by over 2,400 police agencies — including the FBI and Department of Homeland Security — to establish suspects. Within the aftermath of the Capitol riots this January, Clearview AI said the use of its technology by law enforcement sharply elevated as detectives labored to establish these related to the incident.
The American Civil Liberties Union sued the company final yr for violating the Illinois Biometric Info Privateness Act, leading to Clearview stopping the sale of its technology to private companies and non-law enforcement entities. In November, the Australian government ordered the company to clear its database of all its residents, and earlier this yr, numerous European agencies filed legal complaints in opposition to Clearview AI. As well as, a Canadian privacy commissioner called the company’s technology “unlawful mass surveillance.”
Clearview AI hasn’t even been in a position to get on Massive Tech’s good aspect. Final yr, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube all despatched stop and desist letters demanding that the corporate cease scraping photos and movies from the platforms, because the observe is in violation of every website’s insurance policies.