Reporting on Live Facial Recognition Trials

In July, Prof Pete Fussey and Dr Daragh Murray published their Independent Report of Metropolitan Police Service’s trials of Live Facial Recognition technology. This report set out the findings of the only independent analysis of police uses of this technology published to date. The report concluded that reform is needed on trialling and incorporating new technology in police practice and there is a need to incorporate human rights considerations at each stage of the Metropolitan Police Services decision making process. In addition, the report highlighted that meaningful engagement is needed at a national level. The report gained significant media attention and was covered by The New York Times, Financial Times, The Times, The Guardian, Le Monde, La Repubblica, PBS Newshour, BBC Newsnight, Nature and others. The report continues to have significant policy impact following meetings with parliamentarians, civil society groups and surveillance regulators. The research was discussed in the British Parliament and the London Assembly and the authors were invited to the EU Fundamental Rights Agency in Vienna to help inform policy on biometric surveillance. Other related events took place at MIT, UEA, and the University of Bahia among others. Prof Pete Fussey and Dr Daragh Murray were also joined by Clare Garvie (Georgetown University Law Centre) and Reema Patel (Ada Lovelace Institute) for a panel discussion at the Royal Society, London on “Facial Recognition and Human Rights”. The panellists discussed the implications of facial recognition in the UK and US and a recording of the event is available here. The research has also been shortlisted for the University of Essex’s Research Excellence Award for Best Interdisciplinary Research.