This is how Ukraine uses Clearview AI software in war

Ukraine uses Clearview AI facial recognition in the war. The controversial software of the American company extracts images from social media and other platforms is used to identify the Russian military

Ukraine uses Clearview AI facial recognition software to identify Russian soldiers killed in combat. In an interview with Reuters, Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Mykhailo Fedorov said the military uses the technology to identify soldiers and then send alerts to the fallen fighter's family. Clearview's facial recognition system works by comparing a subject's images to its database of 10 billion faces, including more than 2 billion images from Russian social media VKontakte. In particular, Fedorov said the military uses the app to find a soldier's social media account. The Ukrainian Defense Ministry had free access to Clearview AI, after the company sent a letter to Ukraine offering its services to help "uncover Russian assassins, fight disinformation and identify the dead" once the invasion begins. , Reuters revealed. "War zones can be dangerous when there is no way to distinguish enemy combatants from civilians," said CEO Ton-That. "Facial recognition technology can help reduce uncertainty and increase security in these situations." In addition, according to the CEO of Clearview, Kiev authorities have used the company's facial recognition software to verify that travelers to Ukraine are who they claim. Although the details of the operation to identify deceased Russian soldiers in Ukraine remain unclear, the practice has already attracted the attention of some privacy experts such as the executive director of the Surveillance Technology Oversight Project Albert Fox Cahn who fears the possibility of ' incorrect identification. All the details. FACIAL RECOGNITION USED IN UKRAINE On Twitter, Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Fedorov explained the identification process without specifically naming Clearview. “A month ago, we all worked on FaceID and CRM systems to process calls for eServices,” Fedorov wrote. "Now, let's work on the automatic identification of the corpses of the occupants and the automatic composition of the RU subscribers to tell the truth about the war." Interviewed by Reuters, Fedorov refused to specify the number of bodies identified through facial recognition. However, he stated that the percentage of recognized individuals declared by families was "high". ALL THE NUMBERS OF CLEARVIEW IN UKRAINE Although Fedorov did not mention Clearview, he did the same to give details on the collaboration with Kiev. CEO Ton-That has decided to offer Clearview's services to Ukraine free of charge, as first reported by Reuters. Now, less than a month later, Clearview has created more than 200 accounts for users of five Ukrainian government agencies, which have conducted more than 5,000 searches. Clearview has also translated its app into Ukrainian. "It was an honor to help Ukraine," said Ton-That, who provided emails from officials from three agencies in Ukraine, confirming that she had used the tool. He identified dead soldiers and prisoners of war, as well as travelers in the country, confirming the names on their official identity documents. WHAT IS CLEARVIEW Clearview AI, founded in New York in 2017, has received criticism for data privacy breaches around the world. The company leapt to the news in early 2020 after the New York Times investigation that law enforcement in the United States - from the local police in Florida to the FBI to the Department of Homeland Security - would make use of its "app" for facial recognition. Critics are concerned that the company is patenting an invasive technology. Clearview AI cannot even count on the support of Big Tech. Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube and Twitter have all warned the company to stop scraping images from their platforms via facial recognition technology. Recent reports from the Washington Post suggest that Clearview has an ambition to expand its business beyond law enforcement. Internally, the company says its data collection system uploads 1.5 billion images per month and could host a total of 100 billion images in its database by the end of 2022. THE FEARS In recent years, the company has raised concerns about reliability and privacy violations. And now the question is what Clearview AI will do with the data it collects, including "photos of victims on the battlefield." How has it underlined neato Fox Cahn, executive director of the Surveillance Technology Oversight Project, in a recent interview with Forbes .. "When facial recognition inevitably misidentifies the dead, it will mean heartbreak for the living," Fox Cahn pointed out. Evan Greer, deputy director of digital rights group Fight for the Future, is opposed to any use of facial recognition technology. "War zones are often used as proving grounds not only for weapons, but also for surveillance tools that are later deployed to the civilian population or used for law enforcement or crowd control purposes," he told NYT. Greer. "Companies like Clearview are eager to exploit the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine to normalize the use of their malicious and invasive software." Meanwhile, advocacy groups like Privacy International have also accused Clearview of using the war to its advantage. THE COMPANY'S POSITION In return Clearview said in a statement that it is ensuring that every person with access to the tool is trained in how to use it safely and responsibly. Furthermore, the company added that tests have shown that the software is bias-free and can select the correct face from a series of more than 12 million photos with an accuracy rate of 99.85%. THE LONG LIFE OF EUROPEAN PRIVACY AUTHORITIES Finally, in addition to fears and criticisms, the company is under the lens of the authorities around the world. At the beginning of March in Italy, the Privacy Guarantor fined the company 20 million euros for violating EU consumer privacy laws and ordered it to delete all its data on residents in Italy. The UK Information Commissioner's Office also ordered the company to stop processing all user data in November. France issued a similar order in December. In the United States, the New York company is facing a lawsuit in federal court in Chicago filed by consumers under the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act, reports the Guardian. The current case concerns whether the company's collection of images from the Internet has violated the privacy law.