Ohio Secretly Using Facial Recognition Technology
...which your state probably uses, too
By Matt Cantor, Newser User
Posted Aug 27, 2013 12:38 PM CDT
In this Feb. 5, 2013, file photo, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine answers questions during a news conference at the Bureau of Criminal Investigation in Richfield, Ohio.   (AP Photo/Tony Dejak, File)

(Newser) – Ohio has been using new facial-recognition technology to aid in law enforcement for nearly three months—without mentioning it to residents, the Cincinnati Enquirer reports. State Attorney General Mike DeWine says he didn't believe a public announcement was necessary, given that 26 states already use similar systems, he tells the paper. The technology, which has been used some 2,600 times since June, can identify people by matching uploaded photos—from security cameras, for instance—to driver's licenses or mug shots. It then presents up to a dozen of the closest matches from a database of 21 million photos.

DeWine wasn't informed when the system went live in early June, "but I wasn't concerned," he notes. "If we find something (wrong), we would change it, and if we find something alarming, we would shut it down." Now, officials are reviewing and updating policies surrounding the system; the ACLU wants it shut down in the meantime, the Raw Story reports. The AG held a press conference yesterday to address the issue. "You're going to save lives," he said, per the Toledo Blade. "For us not to do this would be a dereliction of our duty to the people of the state of Ohio to protect them."

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Showing 3 of 37 comments
fractal
Aug 28, 2013 12:13 AM CDT
If law enforcement is doing it on "The Closer", I assume it is doing the same where I live.
HMD-SMD-ITY
Aug 27, 2013 8:05 PM CDT
So, you see, the trick is to obscure the metrics used to identify someone when you are out and doing something considered, well, illegal. A patch on the eye helps out. Beard is next. Long bangs also is good. I was in my first police academy and told the guy teaching the technical investigations class I could foil his 1)polygraph, 2) fingerprints, and 3) facial recognition. I was able to foil the polygraph because at that time, they did not have the same countermeasures they do today. They have since fixed the glitch and those techniques are now rather useless. You could still do some downers like barbs but that would cause an equal reaction between the control and actual questions. But its really the only thing that is closest to letting you beat the machine. You could really beat the older analogue machines with barbs. But today's machines use complex algorithms and it would detect drug use. Even with that, cops may test you for drug use anyway at the same time you get a polygraph. So on fingerprints, you use a thick glue or gloves. Gloves would give you away so the thick glue like super glue mixed with silicone works well. You may leave residue of glue and silicone at the scene but no fingerprints. I challenged an old timey detective to a contest and all I did was use a hot wire to ruin the fingerprint patterns on my fingertips. It only hurt a while. I heated up a paperclip like frat rats do to brand pledges. I branded some patterns over key fingerprint ID spots. He then did a digital printing and looked at it and said, "Nice try, you can't fool me." He worked on it for a couple hours and said, "Ok, nobody's going to do that in real life." He couldn't make a match. So facial recognition looks at your eyes the most and measures between them. It looks at nose, mouth, cheeks, head shape, and of course the bonus, a tattoo. So I asked a detective if just covering one eye would foul it up. He said he could still place the marker on the location where the pupil would be and get a match. To be fair, he had to try to match it up to the existing national database, not just a local lineup with my photo included. He did not get a match even though my ugly mug is in numerous public databases for permits, licenses, and prior background checks.
winterfairy
Aug 27, 2013 6:09 PM CDT
Ohio was a police state decades ago. Every college student traveling to college knew to avoid Ohio if possible and if they couldn't to drive like an old man 5 mph BELOW the speed limit.