AI facial analysis demonstrates both racial and gender bias

Researchers from MIT and Stanford University found that that three different facial analysis programs demonstrate both gender and skin color biases. The full article will be presented at the Conference on Fairness, Accountability, and Transparency la…
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Facial recognition software is biased towards white men, researcher finds

New research out of MIT’s Media Lab is underscoring what other experts have reported or at least suspected before: facial recognition technology is subject to biases based on the data sets provided and the conditions in which algorithms are created.

Joy Buolamwini, a researcher at the MIT Media Lab, recently built a dataset of 1,270 faces, using the faces of politicians, selected based on their country’s rankings for gender parity (in other words, having a significant number of women in public office). Buolamwini then tested the accuracy of three facial recognition systems: those made by Microsoft, IBM, and Megvii of China. The results, which were originally reported in The New York Times, showed inaccuracies in gender identification…

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Chinese Police Add Facial Recognition Glasses to Their Surveillance Arsenal

You’ve probably heard of Transitions lenses that can adapt to changing light conditions. Now, get ready for facial recognition lenses.

Police officers in Zhengzhou, China have been spotted wearing sunglasses equipped with facial recognition software that allows them to identify individuals in a crowd. These surveillance sunglasses were actually rolled out last year, but a recent report from China’s QQ published a series of photos of the glasses in action.

China has consistently been ahead of the curve in terms of utilizing artificial intelligence (AI) for surveillance. The country’s CCTV system tracked down a BBC reporter in just seven minutes during a demonstration in 2017. But this new technology, developed by LLVision, takes China’s surveillance efforts to a whole new level. Not just in theory, either — reports from the official People’s Daily newspaper seem to indicate that it’s improving police work.

Surveillance That Actually Works

With the Lunar New Year just around the corner, it’s a busy time of year for the country’s many airports, railway stations, and public transportation hubs. Chinese state media has reported that police wearing the specs at the East Railway Station in Zhengzhou have already spotted seven people wanted in connection with major criminal cases and have caught more than 25 people who were using someone else’s identity.

Not only do the surveillance glasses actually work, but they also work better — and faster — than traditional CCTV setups. Security footage is notoriously grainy, and even if cameras are being monitored in real-time, the lag between spotting someone who might be a person of interest and calling authorities can be enough time for that person to make a clean getaway.

The sunglasses are connected to a handheld device that uses facial recognition software to compare who the wearer sees against a pre-loaded database packed with photos of 10,000 suspects. And it does so in just one tenth of a second.

Image Credit: Creative Commons
Image Credit: Creative Commons.

“By making wearable glasses, with AI [artificial intelligence] on the front end, you get instant and accurate feedback,” LLVision Chief Executive Wu Fei told the Wall Street Journal. “You can decide right away what the next interaction is going to be.” However, Wu did add that the accuracy isn’t perfect. Environmental “noise” in a crowded terminal, for instance, could skew the results.

Skewed results aren’t the only concern that comes with giving law enforcement wearable surveillance: many have also pointed out that the devices could lend themselves to racial profiling, and even more broadly, have the potential to infringe on citizens’ privacy.

As William Nee, a China researcher at Amnesty International, said to the Wall Street Journal: “The potential to give individual police officers facial-recognition technology in sunglasses could eventually make China’s surveillance state all the more ubiquitous.”

Eventually? Given that Chinese law enforcement is already using technology that’s uncomfortably reminiscent of Mission Impossible, it seems like that ubiquity has already arrived.

The post Chinese Police Add Facial Recognition Glasses to Their Surveillance Arsenal appeared first on Futurism.

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Chinese police are using facial recognition sunglasses to track citizens

China’s police have a new weapon in their surveillance arsenal: sunglasses with built-in facial recognition. According to reports from local media, the glasses are being tested at train stations in the “emerging megacity” of Zhengzhou, where they’ll be used to scan travelers during the upcoming Lunar New Year migration. This is a period of extremely busy holiday travel, often described as the largest human migration event on Earth, and police say the sunglasses have already been used to capture seven suspects wanted in major cases, as well as 26 individuals traveling under false identities.

The sunglasses are the latest component in China’s burgeoning tech-surveillance state. In recent years, the country has poured resources into…

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Police in China are scanning travelers with facial recognition glasses

Police in China are now sporting glasses equipped with facial recognition devices and they're using them to scan train riders and plane passengers for individuals who may be trying to avoid law enforcement or are using fake IDs. So far, police have c…
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