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Facial Recognition Goes to War

The New York Times – “Services that put a name to a face, including Clearview AI, are being used to identify Russian soldiers, living or dead, and to verify that travelers in Ukraine are who they claim…Identifying dead soldiers and notifying their families is part of a campaign, according to a Telegram post by the Ukrainian vice prime minister Mykhailo Fedorov, to break through to the Russian public the cost of the conflict and to “dispel the myth of a ‘special operation’ in which there are ‘no conscripts’ and ‘no one dies,’” he wrote.  Images from conflict zones, of slaughtered civilians and soldiers left behind on city streets turned battlefields, have become more widely and instantaneously available in the social media era. President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine has shown graphic images of attacks on his country to world leaders in making his case for more international aid. But beyond conveying a visceral sense of war, those kinds of images can now offer something else: a chance for facial recognition technology to play a significant role. Critics warn, however, that the tech companies could be taking advantage of a crisis to expand with little privacy oversight, and that any mistakes made by the software or those using it could have dire consequences in a war zone…”

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