AI Privacy

Clearview AI: identify everyone on Earth via mega database

Facial recognition company Clearview AI wants to be able to identify virtually everyone on Earth through a mega database containing 100 billion images. The company recently announced this to investors, The Washington Post reported on the basis of a financial presentation it received. According to the British privacy regulator ICO, Clearview has a system with a database of ten billion collected images. This allows police services to identify unknown suspects. More than six hundred American police and investigation services are said to have used Clearview. The company wants to expand the database to 100 billion facial images, which equates to 14 photos for every person on Earth. In addition, the company not only wants to scan faces for investigative services, but states that it can also monitor flex workers. The company is also researching technologies that allow it to identify people by the way they walk, determine their location from a photo and scan their fingerprints remotely. In the presentation, Clearview states that the database used now contains more than ten billion images and the data collection system processes 1.5 billion images per month. With an investment of fifty million dollars, the company claims to be able to expand the database to one hundred billion images, as well as develop new products. Furthermore, the money will be used for lobbying policymakers, which should result in more favorable legislation. For violating British privacy legislation, the ICO is considering imposing a fine of the equivalent of EUR 20 million on the facial recognition company.