Privacy is Dead

Say Cheese: The FBI’s Facial Recognition System Is Now Fully Operational

FBI headquarters in Washington, D.C. (Wikimedia Commons)

Remember that Big Brother-esque facial recognition software the FBI has been developing for a few years? It’s finally ready to go.

The FBI announced yesterday that its Next Generation Identification (NGI) system is now fully operational, the Verge reports. Among other features detailed here, NGI features the oft-fear-inducing Interstate Photo System (IPS), which stores millions of citizens’ photographs, and is designed to help law enforcement pair names and faces associated with criminal activity. Read More

Crime and Punishment

Alleged Pedophile On the Lam Caught in Nepal With Facial Recognition Software

Gotcha. (fbi.gov)

Nearly a decade and a half after fleeing New Mexico, an accused kidnapper and child sex offender was tracked down in Nepal using facial recognition technology.

Juggler and magic shop owner Neil Stammer jumped bail fourteen years ago, after being accused in 1999 of criminal sexual penetration in the first degree, kidnapping, criminal sexual contact of a minor, bribery of a witness, and battery, the BBC reports. Read More

Meanwhile in Canada

Canadians Are Locating Lost Pets Using a Facial Recognition App

You wouldn't want to lose this guy, now would you? (Wikimedia Commons)

Americans may be gearing up to use facial recognition software to find out if their friends are serial killers, but meanwhile it Canada, they’re using it to track down their lost puppies.

According to the Globe and Mail, Vancouver dog shop cofounder Philip Rooyakkers has developed an app called Positive Identification of Pets—or PiP, for short—that helps tech-savvy Canadians find their lost cats and dogs. Read More

cAPItalism

At Aviary’s Photo Hack Day, Face.com is the Killer API

Marx would be proud

The joy of a hack day is the time constraint, the 24-hour crunch that forces coders to get creative and make hard decisions about how much they can really accomplish. At Aviary’s photo hack day yesterday, a very well-attended event that produced over 40 hacks and oodles of prizes, the most used API was from Face.com, an Israeli start-up working on facial recognition.

Connecting to their API allowed a hack to identify Facebook friends and even chart their faces across five emotions (happy, sad, angry surprised, neutral), adding emotional and social depth to projects built on short notice.  Read More