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National

IA: Sex Offender Facial Recognition System

MASON CITY, Iowa – More sex offenders could soon be off of the streets thanks to a new project that will help identify them.
The Iowa Department of Public Safety is currently seeking funds that will be used to create a state-wide facial recognition system to identify sexual offenders.
Once the software is in place, it will connect with other databases and cross-reference sex offenders through photos using a biometric system. Full Article

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  1. JM of Wi.

    I suppose the dept. of public saftey has $ to piss away and basically the sheriff is an idiot. Hope I’ll make $ on the tech stock if it’s public. Maybe it uses amba.

  2. Concerned Registrant

    Is “sneakiness” a felony or a misdemeanor?

  3. DavidH

    big brother created the sex offender/ terrorist in order to implement these new technologies to manage their citizens, no one is getting alarmed when it’s supposedly to make society safe; watch out people the future is now! just think they also know everything about your online social, general interests, and other activities–these other things are merely gravy!

  4. Lake County

    Many towns are already using license plate readers to track people entering and leaving their town. This is happening in many communities now. I think this Sheriff is just using sex offender fears to get the county to purchase the equipment for him and he will more likely use it to find people with outstanding warrants and keep track of the citizens to help make it easier for him to fight any crimes. In order to track sex offenders faces, you must capture and do a check on every face you capture including citizens that have never committed a crime. So then what happens with that data after the software determines that the person is not a match as a sex offender? Opens up a lot of scary questions. Unless the ACLU fights this type of activity, I suspect that everyone in America will someday be tracked 100% of the time when outside our home.

    • David Kennerly, still radioactive after all these years

      My sister pointed something out to me after I had returned from visiting her and my other relatives this past summer. She said that her Facebook account was able to offer friend recommendations based entirely upon some images of our cousins, whom we had just seen for the first time in decades, that were amongst those she had just uploaded. The friend recommendations for our cousins who, by the way, do not share our surname, could only have been prompted as a result of facial recognition since their names did not appear in my sister’s Facebook account as captions for the images. In other words, what was required was that Facebook would have had to identify our cousins based solely upon their facial images and then compare them with other images, of the same people, they had in their database and for which they had accompanying identifying names. I completely discounted this possibility and assured her that there must have been something else that prompted these recommendations but, upon doing some research, I found that Facebook is now, indeed, able to scan all of its users’ images and establish identities and perform matches from one account to another and make recommendations based upon those matches. What is more, they are able to perform these massive searches in a matter of hours or even minutes, perhaps seconds.

      Facial recognition has moved very, very quickly in just a few short years. It was just a few years ago when the Superbowl in Miami, I believe (the one where they got hysterical at the possibility of prostitution going up and called it “human trafficking”), used facial recognition and performed very unreliably at making correct matches. That’s no longer the case, now. We can guess at the uses to which it will be put. Like license plate readers, we will undoubtedly encounter fully networked video surveillance cameras in public places that generate “hits” whenever we walk through the frame. And the networks and databases upon which they rely will only grow in scale and reliability until there is a nearly seamless web that accompanies us wherever we go, unless we put a stop to it right now.

      The arguments for the deployment of this technology are the same arguments used to permanently marginalize people like us: pure paranoia and an intolerance of risks that are vanishingly remote.

      • Lake County

        Facebook has been quite open about their use of facial recognition on all photos posted. That’s why you should not post any photo of yourself and don’t let others post pictures of you. This data is being sold to face recognition software companies. By posting your photos, you give Facebook the right to sell this information. Just read their TOS.

      • Son of Liberty Child of Freedom

        David Kennerly

        What we are witness to is a Global Initiative to Adulterate and Usurp the Social Contract of The United States of America with a One WorldWide contract which creates the same conditions that once existed under The Roman Empire and all the evil (want) it created for the people of the land (common folk).

        This wicked goal has been put into action by the silence of implicitly when the people of the earth accept the innovations of technology with out question, as you pointed out the beguilement of Facebook and the seduction of the cell phone which it’s providers through omission conceal the foundation on which it’s built upon, SS7. We can be grateful to 60 minutes for their article which aired on CBS a few months ago, it’s gives a simple summary on the topic which many are unknowingly made Subject to.

        • David

          When will society stop and think? Maybe there need to be citizen review panels to approve proposed new laws before easily-swayed, knee-jerk-reaction, pandering politicians move the laws forward.
          Just because new technology provides the capability “to do” does NOT automatically mean it “should do.”

      • Timmr

        There is one thing, recognizing a face and attaching it to a flesh and blood person. Then there is interpreting that image to mean something beyond a physical person. But as shown here, the information gleened is selective. It records an image, not intent. What is infered from that image is the problem. The sheriff sees it as sex offender and interprets intent to be up to no good. He just sees a label, and he will get his reward for fonding some way to act on it. People will say yay, and be duped.
        Also, who has control is another problem, and will this new transparency be turned the other way and we will know the players and intents of those who we elect to lead us? I don’t see that as a bad thing, but it is most likely the government and large corporations will use other technogy to keep themselves behind the green curtain. Hopefully, there will also be some curious Toto, noone pays much attention to, who will pull aside the curtain to see the sham that is Oz, The Great and Powerful. A Citizen 5 maybe?

      • Nicholas Maietta

        I am a software developer with extensive background in voice, facial and music fingerprinting. For facial recognition on still images, you can use Python and a library called OpenCV. It’s completely open source.

        Every face detected in a photo is assigned a fingerprint based on an algorithm. If another photo with a different face appears, even if masked slightly or drastically altered, the algorithm can still generate the same fingerprint. At that point it’s just comparing the fingerprints against existing known fingerprints which is lighting fast.

        If you are sitting on billions of records, it only takes roughly 200 milliseconds on today’s high availability clustered databases to match a face to an ID of person connected to that facial fingerprint. Every photo stored in their database would include a list of fingerprints attached.

        Soon will be audio. All phone calls and ambient background noise and pick up on multiple voices and instantly fingerprint each and every one of those voices. A simple recording of up to 10 people in my testing instantly reveals 100% accuracy in fingerprinting these voices.

        This ability has been in existence for a very long time and i am surprised it has taken so many years before companies like Facebook started using it. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if our government gets the fingerprint data directly from Facebook since it’s among the single most comprehensive database on American’s that has ever existed. (People only have themselves to thank for supporting such an evil company)

        • Timmr

          Yeah, I am wondering why Facebook and the government wouldn’t want registrants on social media for its ability to track people?
          What gets me is that so many people willingly give the large corporations their personal info to make huge profits off of, even organizations fighting large corporations use facebook.

        • David

          Great, we can use FB to outreach to all other Registrants via automated facial recognition and FB friend suggestions! Then ACSOL membership and lobbying power can expand exponentially.

    • abolishtheregistry.com

      Don’t forget the story about Sony smart TVs recording your home activity within earshot, the NSA collecting every byte of data they can from every electronic device you have, including your IOT home devices and soon to be vehicles through an in-car wireless receiver/transmitter that’ll talk to passing cars. Ask any geek, it’s not conspiracy theory, it’s conspiracy fact.

      • Lake County

        Being able to listen to anyone through their television or radio is old technology. I remember that in the 70’s I had a 150 in 1 electronics kit from Radio Shack that you could easily build to eaves drop on conversations through any radio that was turned on in the room. Any speaker can also act as a microphone. The technology is the same. However a picture screen can never act like a camera. Both are completely different technologies that work together in one direction. Now if your screen has an added camera to it (like many laptops), that’s an entirely different problem. (place tape over lens)

        • abolishtheregistry.com

          ‘Now if your screen has an added camera to it (like many laptops), that’s an entirely different problem. (place tape over lens)’

          I’ve had tape over every laptop camera since I could first buy one, used to unplug my webcams too.

          I’m not sure why you’re talking about screens filming you. I assume most people know screens can watch you, their for watching. 🙂

      • Nicholas Maietta

        People don’t care. They are buying the Echo, Dot and Google Home devices like crazy. They have already gotten used to mass surveillance and don’t feel it’s worth fighting against anymore since they know they won’t win. That’s the attitude I see. At this point, it’s about convenience and nothing more.

        • Timmr

          We are just going to have to stand and protect our rights in the open, like Standing Rock.

  5. Shaking my head

    This is insane.

    • LM

      You must be new here. Just wait until John Walsh slithers his way into the White House to visit Trump like he did with Obama. It hasn’t even gotten bad yet.

      Walsh was caught on a hot mic 10 years ago telling a reporter we should: “stick microchips up their asses.”

  6. HOOKSCAR

    This is the slippery slope. It started with a registry that was for law enforcement only. Now this. Why not just have a camera set up at bars for those that are serial D.U.I.? They, after all, have a higher recidivism rate. Talk about equal treatment.

    • abolishtheregistry.com

      This really isn’t news. We’ve been a surveillance state for decades, we just weren’t aware of it like we are now. I know it’s a private company but Walmart has facial recognition in their stores. We have traffic cams, license plate readers, eye scanners, gait recognition and multi target satellite tracking systems that can track reportedly thousands of targets simultaneously. I could probably give you another 20 examples off the top of my head. It ain’t Kansas anymore.

    • Nicholas Maietta

      I remember back in 1996 when there was a huge debate going on in our country about the use of GPS tracking systems for use on criminals. Radio talk show hosts (Sean Hannity in particular, during the summer months) were among the voices I heard saying exactly the terms: “Slippery Slope”. They also said the term “Inhumane”. I was 16 at the time and this was the first time I had ever heard this phrase “Slippery Slope” and that was the only context I had to help me understand what it meant. It took me a number of years after that before I learned what this meant.

      Well, fast forward just over a decade later a whole GPS criminal tracking industry lobbied for bad laws like Jessica’s law. Today, kids that are truant to school more than once in parts of Texas are now being outfitted with GPS tracking units.

      What was once considered inhumane to do to criminals is now okay for your kids.

      In fact, the same GPS industry sparked other GPS tracking wrist bracelets for kids. Just go to ebay or amazon and type in “kids gps tracking”. (Do so in incognito or private browsing mode as i’m sure you don’t want that in your browser history because the way it looks on the PC of a registrant vs anyone else)

      So again, this needs to be stopped or it will make an appearance in every state.

      Just a few weeks ago I read something about one of our counties in California doing facial recognition at schools. Those companies copying the data from the government and selling back to the government as a service. Basically more private industries taking money directly from the taxpayers with full permission of of those a taxpayer may never benefit from.

      Of course i’m probably just paranoid. Right?

    • David

      Or how about at liquor stores, automatically restricting alcohol purchases.

  7. B.Wat

    This dumb ass Sheriff, should at least be charged with a misdemeanor for walking around with his head up his ass! He says their goal is to CAPTURE as many sex offenders as possible. What are we some kind wild animal, that needs to be captured? This is one of the most ridiculous things I’ve read on this blog. What are they going to think of next?

  8. Ron

    This is non-sensical. Why would anyone spend hundreds of thousands of dollars, if not more, to monitor a few thousand people? It is more likely this is a foot in the door to first monitor sex offenders, than all ex-convicts, and soon the population at large. These cameras will capture everyones image and they will be added to a data base. What happens to this data? Will it be deleted? Doubtful. This is what the government did will tracking emails and phone calls – on steroids. Start with a group no one will defend and then expand the program to suit your needs. Has anyone seen the movie “Minority Report”?

  9. Nicholas Maietta

    Let’s get straight to the point here: Our government is declaring war against it’s own people and this cannot be allowed. We the People have a right to protect ourselves from cruel and oppressive government or rule.

    • 1984

      I would not say our government but those within our government with a personal agenda. These people, who I think are compromised in some manner, are in positions of influence. They gather support of like people. There is almost no rational. I agree kids need to be totally safe at school. It is not molesters walking the halls but the school staff. Perhaps a new rule of two teachers per class, never will a student be alone with any school staff member. A new program spening major dollars on more facial recognition is such a waste. It will create a new, huge, evolving and growing infrastructure to further erode tax money. And yes the recognition system will be used on everyone, how could it not, it is human nature. Our government, google, marketing, insurance and others track everyone. They have our credit cards, online activity, smart phones, TV programs you watch, what kind of photos you take, new cars with GPS & HUM. We even pay them to track us.
      What to do? Keep pushing back, protect your rights, not only us registrants will be harmed in the long run.

      The book 1984 described most of this many years ago.

    • Nicholas Maietta

      Why are the ones without their own personal agenda keep their oath to protect The Constitution? These people cannot be turning away with a blind eye because that would just make them culpable.

      • 1984

        There is an excellent documentary call “Untouchable”. This film shows the problem of private agendas and coworkers who stay out of the way. You will have to search for a showing or arrange one.

        It will take some power to openly show this behavior and even more to correct it. There are so few in public office that are willing to be seen on the side of sex offenders. No matter how wrong the law or proposed law may be. If a detective is too personally close to a case, that person is removed from that case. It is called conflict of interest and that individual is considered compromised. There is nothing wrong with that procedure, it is being smart. So why are not law writers called out also. It is in every ones interest to stop non objective law. It will only harm and cost lots and lots of money and time to correct.

        Just look around at how screwed up things are for registrants. How did the registration list get on the internet? Who did it really? It use to be need to know only. Even back in the day authorities new public exposure only meant trouble.

        How dare they (who ever they may be, they know who they are) say I am a continued risk to society and our youth. Our future.

        • Nicholas Maietta

          Only those with the money and ability to travel can go watch a documentary. I see. I really hope that’s it’s just in preview for a final release or something because I seems crazy to produce a video only to let people selectively see it. I already knew about this documentary some time back and know it was shown at the National RSOL conference in Georgia a couple months back.

          I guess i’ll see it when it is finally available for the general public. I am certainly not going to travel several states to go see a documentary.

  10. Agamemnon

    Are sex crimes THAT common in Iowa?

    • Punished For Life

      @Agamemnon,
      My guess is that Sheep in Iowa, are in the most danger.

    • Flyover country for a reason

      If you look at that statement, the answer is Yes…Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota and Missouri are notorious for that. The Midwest flyover section of our country is brutal on their on their people and will continue to do so. They are some of the most judgmental and hypocritical people in ‘Murica. Personal experience shows me this.

      If you are from there and don’t subscribe to these ways in there, I don’t mean to lump you in with the wacko’s from there, but you know what it is.

  11. Punished For Life

    Just added another State to my database of places I never plan to even visit. If they are that ignorant in Iowa, I can’t see any reason to ever go there. It will be right next to Florida… of those places I never want to be or even visit.
    And possibly that is what they want. Get us off of their streets. All of the really dangerous people like those of us here on this site?

  12. David M

    These types of technologies are so offensive to most sane normal functioning people. Our government absolutely has declared war on registered citizens and the entire family without ANY care or concern of who they hurt. They have dehumanized us with the thinking… Anything we do to these non people is okay under the guise of public safety. Creating law breakers for things like… walking ur dog in a public park that you help pay for with taxes. Or by not realizing a unmarked or poorly signed child care center is close by. I was driving to visit family for the day in a large city I was unfamiliar with and noticed at the stop sign a school and thought… What would happen if my car broke down right here? I stopped at a Sub Way to eat and seen a child care center across the street when leaving. My dog had to go potty so I stopped at a little park to let him go. All these things citizens get to use freely without worry or fear. Imagine facial recognition being at all places we don’t even realize exsist until we are breaking the law just by living? It’s almost two decades since my conviction. I pay taxes and really what the government has done is outlaw living and taken away our citizenship. They have used brainwashing to do it. Most people don’t even know the truth about sex offender’s because our government has told mostly lies to literally hunt and persecute us all in the name of public safety.

    These laws will eventually come back and boomerang on the rest of society and these oppressive things will be expanded to include other groups of people.

    Law abiding people should be able to live in peace without being terrorized by bullies. Especially two decades later. A free person shouldn’t be worried about visiting family or the location of a job. A free person shouldn’t be fear because of the location of a restaurant. Politicians don’t care but thank goodness some judges do. We are only as decent of a society as our judges are and our freedoms come from judges protecting freedom. It’s obvious politicians are not interested in preserving freedom.

    • Will A

      You are right. You should always realize that you may be under surveillance. At any time.

      This is war. BTW, I would never use the phrase “sex offender”. That is an inaccurate label and a weapon of war.

    • Les Mis Life

      “When they came for the sex offenders, I cheered because I hated them. When they rounded up the immigrants, I thought it was about time. When they came for the muslims, I didn’t speak up because some of them were probably dangerous. When they labeled everyone a cyber criminal who had ever watched or listened to a burned dvd or cd, there was no one left.”

  13. Eric Knight

    Sex Offenders laws are the Gateway to Universal Societal Oppression. One of the things I have done is to research how such laws throughout history have resulted in global calamities and even genocide. It is no secret that registration of sex offenders in Wehrmacht Germany conditioned the German people to accept more and more restrictions on the groups that actually threatened Hitler’s rise, until the point where they were stealing their wealth and killing them through means of the Holocaust, and causing a world war that killed millions upon millions.

    The exact same…not just same, but exactly the same… process is showing up again. People will gladly accept restrictions on registrants, not realizing that the methodologies the government is using to administer those restrictions will be used against those same people whom were happy to see registrants harassed and ultimately destroyed. This is not sliding down a slippery slope; this is jumping clear off the cliff into terminal velocity freefall.

    “First, they came for the sex offenders…” is not an allegory, but a dead-on historical fact, whether it applies to Wehrmacht Germany or Obama-Trump USA.

  14. Paul

    Just so we’re clear: the stated intent of this system is to lock up as many registered citizens as possible; to “get them off the streets”.

    Tell me more about this so-called “civil registration scheme”, and how it’s not a punishment and, therefore, not subject to ex post facto.

    • Nicholas Maietta

      I am afraid it’s not going to be limited to a lock-up mentality. Eventually it will be eventual legalized murder.

      We just saw a story of a man kicked out of a place to live who relies on oxygen, in winter conditions. This is murder if the man dies out on the cold because of the new laws. Where is the outrage? Silence because the people don’t understand or don’t care.

      Eventually, this will be normal and we won’t be so shocked anymore. It must end NOW.

  15. Will A

    I see 13 comments at the actual article but about 3 times as many here. Unfortunately, most people won’t see the comments here. It would be good if we could post them at least at both locations. I often don’t put my comments here because I expect people here will go to the original source and see any comments that are there.

    It is getting more and more where the comments at an article are overwhelmingly against the Registries. It would be good if every single time that someone spoke in favor of the Registries that they were completely drowned in opposition.

    Today, I truly don’t think people with sense or who are Americans support the Registries. I think it is some ignorant, uninformed, uneducated, big-mouth percentage of people who are lazing in our country that support the Registries. They can’t mind their own business, leave other people alone, or keep their stupid mouths shut. Politicians pander to those idiots and people with brains just ignore it. It is time to drown those people out, shut down their voices, and neutralize them.

  16. Katharine

    Facial recognition today. Microchips tomorrow. It’s on the way, people. And it’s beyond scary.
    This is our tax dollars at work. And in exactly the same way the government passed IML. No debate. No discussion.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8RzlXfYBVW8

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