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Volusia County Sherriff’s Office Integrating Facial Recognition Technology.

Mon, Feb 03, 2020 at 6:40PM

Written by Kristen Schmutz


The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office has been catching some heat in their recent announcement to integrate facial recognition technology, that their new software will violate resident’s privacy.

Sheriff Michael Chitwood spoke this morning concerning the matter, ensuring that the Sherriff’s Office is implementing procedural safeguards to protect the privacy of Volusia County Residents.

Clearview AI uses various photos from Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to create an enormous database of images. Though Sherriff Chitwood advises that they will not be scanning the images of people around town or while they are strolling through the mall. The concern of the new technology stems from errors caused by the technology when identifying images of people with darker skin tones.

Chitwood informed the press that VCSO completed a 90-day trial last week and purchased a six-year license for the amount of $10,000 for the program. Roughly six people have access to the program at this time.

Chitwood confirmed that the software helped in investigations for over 30 different cases during the 90-day trial period, but detectives are required to have a “criminal predicate” and use a case number to use the system.

“This isn’t some kind of Orwellian system spying on everyone,” Chitwood said. The information is to be used as a crime tip, and police work will still need to be done.

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