A creepy footnote to the shooting in Maryland yesterday. Apparently, the identity of the shooter – who had no ID on him, refused to give his name and had “obscured” his fingerprints – was determined via the use of facial recognition software.
An NBC news story about the incident mentions this fairly casually and without comment:
“Senior law enforcement sources briefed on the investigation told NBC News that Ramos had been identified through the use of facial recognition software. The sources said earlier that he had somehow obscured his fingerprints, making identification difficult. (Anne Arundel County Deputy Police Chief Bill) Krampf would not confirm those details, and said Thursday evening that he had no knowledge of any facial recognition or anything about fingerprints.”
If, in fact, the shooter was identified via his “faceprint” – so to speak – it shows just how powerful this “tool” is.
Amazon.com Gift Card i... Buy New $25.00 (as of 08:40 EDT - Details) It is also implies pretty strongly that our faceprints are also in the system and the implication of that is troubling. We are probably not only being watched but individually recorded – our comings and goings – whenever we’re out and about. The cameras which are ubiquitous in most areas probably work like those Automated License Plate Readers (ALPRs) which can scan and “process” the license plates of every vehicle that passes within range of the reader.
Some people may not object, of course. If you have nothing to hide . . . .
In which case, why object to random spot checks of our homes by government goons? If you’ve got nothing to hide . . . .
Is it exaggerating things to suggest that all of this keeping track of us is like being made to wear an ankle bracelet which we can’t see or feel but which serves the same purpose? And without the conviction?
You don’t have to wear an ankle bracelet unless you’ve been found guilty of some criminal act first. Then – as an alternative to being placed in a government cage, they let you go home and use your home as the cage, with some limited free roaming occasionally permitted.
But the point is, they know where you are.
Faceprints take it a step farther. They know who you are as well as where you are (and where you have been). With the terabytes of storage capacity known to exist, it is possible – probable – they have the technological means to record and store the daily routines of 300-plus million people, or at least whatever percentage of the population has been faceprinted and lives in or travels through a camera-rich environment.