Until now, U.S. law enforcement has used facial recognition primarily for comparing still photos with mugshots from a database — that is until the ACLU discovered that the Orlando Police Department is testing Amazon’s facial recognition system “Rekognition.”

According to an NPR article, the ACLU noticed law enforcement customers were mentioned in Amazon’s marketing of the service and filed public records requests for Amazon’s communications with Orlando and another Rekognition customer, the Washington County Sheriff’s Office near Portland. 

While there is no laws barring law enforcement from using real-time facial recognition, a spokesman for the ACLU expressed concern over a lack of transparency and public engagement as technology companies and law enforcement agencies seek to bring such technology into common use. 

In a written statement, the Orlando Police Department called Amazon’s system a pilot program and said the technology is not being used in an investigative capacity or in public spaces at this time, without commenting on previous or future uses. 

To read the full article, visit https://www.npr.org/2018/05/22/613115969/orlando-police-testing-amazons-real-time-facial-recognition