Facial recognition system of Tamil Nadu police stirs privacy row -Divya Chandrababu

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published Published on Dec 10, 2022   modified Modified on Dec 10, 2022

-Hindustan Times

According to their website, 126 facial recognition systems have been installed across various states.

The facial recognition system which chief minister M K Stalin launched last year for police to identify criminals has stirred a controversy after a Chennai motorist tweeted about being checked at night, sparking concerns over collecting personal data and the right to privacy.

On December 8, a Twitter user, Siddharth, tweeted to the Chennai police and traffic police: “GRIEVANCE. Weird thing happened yesterday when I was returning home, near Thillai Ganga Nagar subway. A couple of cops stopped me, took a pic of my face and simply let me go. When asked why, he simply ignored. What is this new procedure?!”

To this the verified handle of the Greater Chennai Police responded: “Facial recognition system is being used during night hours to verify persons moving around at night hours. This system is useful in identifying the criminals instantaneously. Nothing to worry.”

Several users pointed out the Orwellian system and asked if this was even legal. “We are extremely worried that this is how the Chennai police is using facial recognition technology,” tweeted Project Panoptic, a community project, which tracks India’s facial recognition projects as a system of mass surveillance. “Such use casts a presumption of criminality on the entire population & violates not just the decision of the SC in the Aadhaar judgement but also the right to privacy.”

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Hindustan Times, 10 December, 2022, https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/facial-recognition-system-of-tn-police-stirs-privacy-row-101670614143523.html

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