DHS mulls requiring airport facial recognition for US citizens

  • Homeland Security is proposing for the expanded implementation facial recognition checks for arriving and departing passengers
  • They want US citizens, who used to be exempted from this, to also be subjected to facial recognition when they enter and exit the US
  • This proposal was not welcomed by some, including the largest civil liberties groups ,citing a number of reasons including privacy concerns

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is pushing for the expanded implementation of existing facial recognition checks for arriving and departing passengers to include US citizens who used to be exempted from this.

Image via U.S. Customs and Border Protection | Zach Caplan

Homeland Security proposed that all travelers, US citizens or not, be subjected to facial recognition when they enter and/or exit the US.

In the past years, Homeland Security has been beefing up its effort to reach their target of setting up facial recognition scanners in the 20 largest airports in the US. They have started with intensified implementation of facial recognition for departing passengers so they can catch those who have overstaying visa.

This change is not welcomed by citizens who used to be exempted from this. In fact, the largest civil liberties groups have been very vocal about their opposition to this; citing a number of reasons including privacy issues.

Image via U.S. Customs and Border Protection | Brian Bell

“Travelers, including U.S. citizens, should not have to submit to invasive biometric scans simply as a condition of exercising their constitutional right to travel. The government’s insistence on hurtling forward with a large-scale deployment of this powerful surveillance technology raises profound privacy concerns,” American Civil Liberties Union senior policy analyst Jay Stanley said; citing data breach of some 100,000 license plates and traveler images last June.

Stanley also said that the government “cannot be trusted” with this technology so he called on lawmakers to step in.

Source: TechCrunch