The database is made up of billions of images from millions of sites including Facebook, YouTube, and Venmo. The New York Times says that Clearview ai’s work could’end privacy as we know it’.
Clearview ai’s database is built on a database of over three billion images. Law enforcement agencies can upload photos of any persons of interest from their cases. The system returns matching pictures from the Internet, along with links to where these images are hosted.
Indiana State police were able to solve a case within 20 minutes by using the app. The NYT says the system has already helped police solve crimes including shoplifting, identify theft, credit card fraud, murder, and child sexual exploitation.
False positives can incriminate the wrong people, privacy advocates fear their use could help create a police surveillance state. Police departments have reportedly used doctored images that could lead to wrongful arrests.
Clearview ai says its customer-support employees will not look at the photos that are uploaded. The system involves uploading photos to its servers, and it’s unclear how secure these are.
A number of police officers had run my photo through the Clearview app. They received calls from company representatives asking if they were talking to the media. Clearview has the ability and, in this case, the appetite to monitor whom law enforcement is searching for.
The system was able to identify photos of her even when she covered the lower half of her face. It also found photographs of her that she’d never seen before.