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Orlando Police: Limited Use Of Driver’s License Photos With Facial Recognition Software

The man was accused of inappropriately touching two minors. Photo: Flickr Creative Commons

Orlando Police say the department will limit the scope of photo databases used with facial recognition software it is testing.

The Orlando Police Department is piloting the Amazon software called Rekognition to track people in real time on city cameras. Right now it is using volunteer police officers to test tracking on 8 city cameras.

Deputy Chief Mark Canty said the department will avoid tapping into a driver’s license database on a regular basis.

“If we were going to use it the way we’re thinking now, we would have a specific suspect that we were looking for, or a specific person that we were looking for, and then we would use an image of that person,” said Canty.

The Orlando Police Department says it needs more time to test out the software. In a memo to the mayor and city council, Orlando police say the department will continue testing on the volunteer officers.

If the Orlando City Council approves use of the software after testing, a policy on the surveillance would come next.

The Florida chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union has urged the city to stop using the program.

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About Catherine Welch

Catherine Welch