Vermont DMV Caught Using Illegal Facial Recognition Program

Local, state, and federal law enforcement were allowed to search DMV photo database, documents show

The Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles has been caught using facial recognition software — despite a state law preventing it.

Documents obtained by the American Civil Liberties Union of Vermont describe such a program, which uses software to compare the DMV’s database of names and driver’s license photos with information with state and federal law enforcement. Vermont state law, however, specifically states that “The Department of Motor Vehicles shall not implement any procedures or processes… that involve the use of biometric identifiers.”

The program, the ACLU says, invites state and federal agencies to submit photographs of persons of interest to the Vermont DMV, which it compares against its database of some 2.6 million photos and shares potential matches. Since 2012, the agency has run at least 126 such searches on behalf of local police, the State Department, FBI, and Immigrations and Customs Enforcement.

…continue reading

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