Cops in South Wales have used automatic facial recognition, or AFR, software to identify a suspect and subsequently arrest him, apparently making this the first arrest aided by this technology in prison island. (We at FOTH very much doubt this is the first time this repressive technology has been used to arrest someone.)
The cops arrested the man, who had a warrant out for his arrest, on May 31 after spotting him via a “Slow Time Static Face Search.” According to the South Wales cops, that search is linked to 500,000 mugshots. The man was spotted by a camera in a cop surveillance van, and then his face was found in the database.
The arrest came as cops were preparing to use real-time software to scan faces near the Cardiff central train station and the Millennium Stadium as part of their security plan for the capitalist circus of the Champions League Football final. Apparently the South Wales cops told Ars Technica the company responsible for the technology that the man they arrested on May 31 was not related to the match, casting doubt over the such a technologies ability to identify properly opening the way for possible wrongful arrests in the future.
Prison island is already blanketed in cameras. There are 5.9 million closed-circuit television cameras on the island, or about 1 camera per 11 people, with facial recognition, number plate reading and movement analyzing software being widely used.
Two years ago, cops in Leicestershire began to make use of all those cameras and started trial runs of NEC’s automatic facial recognition software, NeoFace. According to the company’s website, NeoFace “enables faces to be recorded and archived at a distance, act as a crime deterrent, and help identify a person in real-time.”
NEC has also partnered with British cops in other instances, like when NeoFace was integrated with FaceWatch, a software that lets capitalists look at CCTV stills and videos to report crime to the cops and share the images of suspects. With NeoFace, stores could be alerted when someone from FaceWatch’s watch list—database of people who have been a part of a previous incident in that location—entered the premises.
Again prison island is not surprisingly been used as the testing ground and implementer of repressive technologies against its population. The usual mantras of ‘if you’ve done nothing wrong then don’t worry’ and ‘this technology is needed to keep us safe from the terrorists’ is showing an disturbing increase in the speed of this use of surveillance that is being used against all enemies of the state and those who disturb the peace of society especially those who are against authority, not its perpetuation.
The authoritarian fear and security of technological society can only be met with the attack of chaos and the lack of fear of an existence without control.
Prison island’s infrastructure of control has its cracks, lets exploit them!