Essex Expertise Informs Facial Recognition Decision

The expertise and leading-edge research of three Essex academics has informed a landmark judgment on police use of facial recognition.

On Tuesday 11 August, the Court of Appeal delivered its judgment in a case brought by civil liberties campaigner Ed Bridges and the campaigning organisation Liberty, challenging a previous decision in favour of South Wales Police.

Mr Bridges, who lives in Cardiff, argued that it was possible South Wales Police had captured an image of his face on two occasions, as a result of facial recognition technology being deployed.

He brought a claim for judicial review, arguing that South Wales Police’s approach to deployment was incompatible with the right to respect for private life under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights, data protection legislation, and the Public Sector Equality Duty under section 149 of the Equality Act 2010.

Professor Pete Fussey, from the Department of Sociology and Professor Lorna Woods and Dr Daragh Murray, both from the School of Law, contributed to a ‘Friends of the Court’ submission by the Surveillance Camera Commissioner to the Bridges appeal.

In addition, an annex, detailing Professor Fussey and Dr Murray’s findings in relation to the Metropolitan Police Service, was attached to the Surveillance Camera Commissioner’s submission.

More information is available here.