Scanning Technologies

Britain removing Chinese cameras

All Chinese-made surveillance equipment is to be removed from British government facilities and new rules planned for companies competing for contracts are in response to pressure from within the governing Conservative caucus. Jeremy Quinn, Paymaster General and Minister for the Cabinet Office says the measures would “protect our sensitive sectors from companies which could threaten national security and are a firm deterrence to hostile actors.” [node:read-more:link]

Facial recog software prompts directive

Government privacy watchdogs in B.C., Alberta and Quebec have ordered New York-based Clearview AI to stop collecting, using or disclosing images of people without their consent and to delete images and biometric data already collected. This follows their finding last February that the company’s technology had violated provincial and federal laws with its mass surveillance of Canadians. While Clearview has not serviced law enforcement or other clients in Canada since mid-2020, suggestions it could return to the market have prompted the three provinces to tell the company Dec. [node:read-more:link]

RCMP facial recog program illegal

The RCMP's use of U.S. facial recognition software “to search through massive repositories of Canadians who are innocent of any suspicion of crime presents a serious violation of privacy,” says Privacy Commissioner Daniel Therrien. In a report to Parliament today, he said that by using third-party software, the RCMP violated the Privacy Act rule that no personal information can be collected by a government institution “unless it relates directly to an operating program or activity.” [node:read-more:link]

Facial recognition on the rise

U.S. Customs and Border Protection is extending the use of facial recognition technology to its optional Global Entry program for frequent travelers. Until now, those “low risk” persons only had to have their passports and fingerprint scanned on entry but CBP says the use of facial biometrics eliminates the passport and fingerprint requirements. [node:read-more:link]

Facial recognition lawsuit

A new facial recognition application which can retrieve a person's name, address, telephone number, occupation and other personal details by comparing their photograph to a database of Internet images is the target of a class-action lawsuit. While use of the Clearview AI app is currently limited to law enforcement and its New York-based developers say no general release is planned, the suit argues that it threatens civil liberties. [node:read-more:link]

Facial recog being investigated

Federal Privacy Commissioner Daniel Therrien and three provincial ombudsmen will investigate Canadian use of facial-recognition technology supplied by New York-based Clearview AI. Their probe is in response to reports that the company collects and uses personal data without consent, a potential breach of Canadian privacy laws. [node:read-more:link]

Facial recog use increasing

Having initially denied that it was using facial recognition technology, the RCMP recently confirmed that it had been using it for some time. The program evidently has accumulated large amounts of personal images from social media and in confirming that it has been using the technology, the RCMP said “some municipal police” also use it. [node:read-more:link]

Renewed biometrics focus in U.S.

The Department of Homeland Security is planning another “biometric technology rally” with a view to having developers collectively test and accelerate emerging automated biometrics. Two earlier events tested tools individually but this year’s evidently will focus on identifying collaborative groups which would lead the DHS efforts. [node:read-more:link]

RCMP limiting facial recog use

Having confirmed that it has been using Clearview AI facial recognition technology for some time, the RCMP now says it will limit it to “limited and specific circumstances,” A spokesperson says the focus will be on “exigent circumstances for victim identification” in cases of suspected sexual exploitation of children or where a threat of grievous bodily harm or a threat to life is considered imminent.” [node:read-more:link]

Cybersecurity broadened in U.S.

The U.S. Department of Defense is broadening its Comply-to-Connect (C2C) program to encompass the entire U.S. military in a bid to ensure that any device touching its network complies with DoD cybersecurity standards. Set up by the National Security Agency, the Marine Corps and the Air Force in 2013, C2C continuously analyzes all connected devices such as smartphones and computers to ensure compliance. [node:read-more:link]

Facial recognition concerns

As the Transportation Security Agency ramps up the use of facial recognition technology at U.S. airports, one Democrat in Congress says he’d like a more measured approach. Massachusetts Sen. Ed Markey has suggested to a Senate subcommittee that current TSA data protections are inadequate and a threat to civil liberties. [node:read-more:link]

The promise and threat of 5G

While the U.S. government and the private sector are excited about the potential of 5G telecommunications, they also worry about its potential use as a weapon against networks. Among those expressing concern are former Federal Communications Chairman Tom Wheeler, current FCC Commissioner Geoffrey Starks, and former National Security Council Senior Director for Strategic Planning Robert Spalding. [node:read-more:link]

Mixed feelings about biometrics

A new Pew Research Centre study indicates that although Americans are becoming more receptive to biometric scans and facial recognition technologies, their growing acceptance is so far limited to law enforcement’s use. They apparently are less trusting of the private sector. [node:read-more:link]

DRS receives 3rd award for counterintelligence

Leonardo DRS, for the third time,  has been awarded the Defense Security Service Award for Excellence in Counterintelligence. The award is the highest U.S. honor given to the defense industry for protecting classified information and technology through a culture of compliance with government security regulations and partnership with DoD intelligence services. [node:read-more:link]


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