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Police minister rejects the need for ethics guidance on predictive policing technology

Claudia Glover writes in The Tech Monitor that the UK’s policing minister has rejected the suggestion that police forces might need ethical guidance in relation to emerging technologies. This, despite alarm from campaigners over live facial recognition and ‘predictive policing’. UK police forces are pursuing many of these technologies. Last year, the Mayor of London’s Office approved a new £3m “Retrospective Facial Recognition” system that will allow police to compare faces identified in CCTV footage against archival footage. “We have to be slightly careful not to stifle innovation,” UK policing minister Kit Malthouse Malthouse said, and that formal procurement frameworks “tend to be generally for more mature technology”. He said that while there could be room for regional bodies advising police forces on technology ethics, he would be “concerned about setting up a parallel ethics group” on a national level, as Parliament already serves that purpose. “In the end, aren’t […]

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MI5’s use of personal data was ‘unlawful’, says watchdog

The security service MI5 has handled large amounts of personal data in an “undoubtedly unlawful” way, a watchdog has said. The Investigatory Powers Commissioner said information gathered under warrants was kept too long and not stored safely. Civil rights group Liberty said the breaches involved the “mass collection of data of innocent citizens”. The high court heard MI5 knew about the issues in 2016 but kept them secret. “MI5 have been holding on to people’s data – ordinary people’s data, your data, my data – illegally for many years,” said Megan Goulding, a lawyer for Liberty, which brought the case. Read more