ACLU sues Clearview AI claiming the company's tech crosses ethical bounds

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The American Civil Liberties Union has accused Clearview AI's biometric platform of creating a nightmare scenario that many have long feared.
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is taking Clearview AI to court, claiming the company's facial surveillance activities violate the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) and "represent an unprecedented threat to our security and safety".

The legal action, brought on by lawyers at the ACLU of Illinois and the law firm Edelson PC, is on behalf of organisations that represent survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence, undocumented immigrants, and other vulnerable communities.

Clearview AI, founded by Australian entrepreneur Hoan Ton-That, provides facial recognition software, marketed primarily at law enforcement.

See also: Data breach exposes Clearview AI client list

The ACLU said not stopping Clearview AI would "end privacy as we know it".

"Face recognition technology offers a surveillance capability unlike any other technology in the past. It makes it dangerously easy to identify and track us at protests, AA meetings, counselling sessions, political rallies, religious gatherings, and more," the ACLU wrote in a blog post.

"For our clients -- organisations that serve survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault, undocumented immigrants, and people of colour -- this surveillance system is dangerous and even life-threatening. It empowers abusive ex-partners and serial harassers, exploitative companies, and ICE agents to track and target domestic violence…
Asha Barbaschow
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