The controversial facial recognition software program maker Clearview AI has a brand new contract with ICE, probably the most controversial U.S. authorities company. Clearview was already recognized to work with the department of Homeland Safety fiercely criticized for implementing the Trump administration’s harsh immigration insurance policies. The brand new contract makes it clear that relationship is ongoing — and that Clearview isn’t simply taking part in a bit half in tech’s profitable scrum for federal contracts.
First spotted by tech watchdog Tech Inquiry, the brand new contract is value $224,000 and can present the company with what is simply described as “Clearview licenses,” seemingly simply entry to the corporate’s software program companies. In keeping with the award discover, the funding workplace for the contract is Homeland Safety Investigations (HSI), a division inside ICE that focuses on “cross-border prison exercise,” together with drug and human trafficking. 4 corporations competed for the contract.
Clearview is not any stranger to controversy. Its considerably mysterious facial recognition software program permits shoppers to add a photograph of anybody to cross-reference it towards a large database stuffed with images scraped from on-line sources, together with social networks. Civil liberties teams see Clearview’s tech as a privateness nightmare, however for any legislation enforcement company tasked with monitoring down folks, it’s a dream come true.
Clearview has confronted near-constant scrutiny from privateness advocates and even massive tech corporations for the reason that quiet firm was uncovered in a report this January. Fb, Google, Linkedin, Twitter and YouTube have all denounced Clearview’s use of information scraped from their platforms, with a few of these corporations even authoring cease-and-desist letters for violating their phrases of service.
In Could, the ACLU introduced that it was suing Clearview over privateness violations. That swimsuit wields the Illinois Biometric Info Privateness Act (BIPA) towards the corporate, the identical legislation that beforehand extracted a $550 million settlement from Fb on behalf of Illinois residents.
“Corporations like Clearview will finish privateness as we all know it, and have to be stopped,” ACLU Senior Employees Legal professional Nathan Freed Wessler stated of the lawsuit.