Beginning in February 2020, the 2020 emails begin with sp Clearview AI CEO Hayan Ton-That That Introducing NYPD sub-inspector Chris Flanagan. After the initial meeting, Clearview AI entered into a vendor agreement with NYPD in December 2018 on a trial basis that lasted until next March.
Documents show that many NYPD individuals, from departmental leadership to junior officers, had access to Clearview during and after this time. ClearView encourages high use of AI services across all exchanges. (See “If you can reach 100 inquiries,” boarding instructions call on officers.) Emails show that trial accounts for NYPD were created in late February 2020, almost a year after the trial period ended.
We reviewed the emails and talked to top surveillance and legal experts about their content. Here’s what you need to know.
NYPD lies about the extent of its relationship with Clearview AI and its use of face recognition technology
NYPD reported BuzzFeed News And New York Post Previously it had no formal relationship “formally or informally” with Clearview AI. NYPD has revealed that it was tested in ClearView AI, but emails show that it was used by people who completed a high amount of searches in real investigations over a long period of time.
“The app is working great,” said one detective working in the department’s facial recognition unit. In another, an official from the NYPD Identity Theft Squad said, “We are still getting positive results” and “continued to make arrests.” (We removed full names and email addresses from these images, other personal details were redacted in the original document.)
Albert Fox Kahn, executive director of the nonprofit Surveillance Technology Surveillance Project in New York City, said the records clearly contradict NYPD’s earlier public statements about the use of the Clareview AI.
“There’s a way for our officers to get a clearview account – not for weeks or months – year after year,” he says. “We have evidence of meetings with top level officials of NYPD, including the facial recognition department. It’s not just a few officers who will go and get a trial account. It was a systematic adoption of Clearview’s face recognition technology to target New Yorkers.
Further, NYPD’s Description of its facial recognition useWhich is required under the recently passed law, which states that “investigators compare the images of the investigation obtained during the investigation with those already in the possession of the NYPD, a group of regulated and limited photography.” Clearview is known for AI’s database More than 3 billion pictures Scraped from the web.
NYPD is working closely with immigration enforcement and officials have referred ClearView AI to ICE
The emails show that NYPD has sent multiple emails to ICE agents who are present as referrals to the Department of Homeland Security with the help of Clearview in its technology sales. The email signatures of the two police officers had attachments to both the NYPD and Homeland Security, while another officer was identified as a member of the Homeland Security Task Force.
New York has been designated a sanctuary city, meaning it limits its cooperation with local law enforcement federal immigration agencies. In fact, the face recognition of NYPD Policy statement States that “information is not shared in further progress in the application of immigration” and “other agencies will not be given access in order to further the implementation of immigration.”
“I think a big recourse is how much illegal and uncontrolled interaction between local police, federal law enforcement, immigration law enforcement and the landscape of surveillance and data sharing,” says Matthew Gariglia from the Electronic Frontier Foundation. “There just seems to be so much communication, probably data sharing and so much uncontrolled use of technology.”
Kahan said the emails immediately sounded alarm bells, especially since a large amount of law enforcement information is executed through central systems known as fusion centers.
“You can claim that you are all a sanctuary city, but as long as you continue these DHS task forces, as long as you have data fusion centers that allow real-time data exchange with DHS, that promise is false.
Many officials asked to use ClearView AI on their personal devices or through their personal email accounts.
At least four executives asked for access to the ClearView app on their personal devices or via personal email. The devices of the department are closely controlled and it can be difficult to download applications on official NYPD mobile phones. Some officers obviously preferred to use their personal devices when department phones were very limited.
Clearview replied to this email, “Hi William, you should have a setup email in your inbox soon.”
Jonathan McCoy was a digital forensic attorney for the Legal Aid Society and participated in the filing of the Freedom of Information request. He found the use of personal devices particularly worrying. “My acceptance is that they were actively trying to undermine NYPD policies and procedures by saying that if you were going to use facial recognition technology, you would have to go through FIS (facial recognition department) and use the technology already approved by NYPD Wholesale. NYPD already has a facial recognition system, provided by an organization called Datawarks.