Dutch police have started using facial recognition technology to identify suspects, broadcaster NOS said on Friday.
The technology will be used to identify people whose photograph is included in the police database of 800,000 faces, the broadcaster said.
The database is made up of photographs of people who have been jailed for at least a year or who are suspected of committing a crime carrying a sentence of at least a year.
The photos of people who are innocent are supposed to be removed from the system but it is unclear how quickly that happens, NOS said.
The system will be used to compare photographs of suspects taken by security cameras and bodycams with the database.
A second database, containing the photographs of refugees, people scheduled for deportation and people who have requested visas can only be accessed with the permission of the public prosecution department, NOS said.
‘This means it includes photographs of innocent people,’ said Daphne van der Kroft of internet privacy group Bits of Freedom.
Information law professor Nico van Eijk told the broadcaster he is concerned about ‘feature creep’ – measures introduced for one purpose which are then used for another.
For example, cameras to recognise car number plates were introduced in an effort to spot suspects. But now talks are underway to keep the number plate information for four weeks, he said.
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