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Facial recognition software curbs federal crimes, identity theft

It seems that the future of law enforcement has arrived in Kansas City, Kansas. With state-of-the-art technology, Kansas officials have implemented systems designed to decrease crime in the state. The software is designed to recognize specific facial features, matching pictures of everyday individuals who may be working to evade law enforcement. The system could be revolutionary for law enforcement throughout the state, as it has even been used to target those accused of federal crimes.

News reports show that the technology uses measurements to create a mathematical model or representation of a face. When a picture of a someone is introduced, that person's face is compared to others in the state database. In one instance, a woman who was applying for a Kansas driver's license was nabbed for identity fraud. Apparently, the woman had applied for and received a Kansas identification card that was under a different name. The woman is accused of criminal activity because she allegedly abused state systems in a bid to stay in the U.S. illegally. The woman also allegedly collected unemployment benefits using the falsified identification card. She is now facing a federal identity fraud indictment.

The software has been extraordinarily successful in targeting driver's license fraud. In recent months, more than 130 new fraud cases have been identified, potentially cutting down on criminal activity related to identity theft. In some cases, the identity theft is intended to help illegal immigrants stay in the country, but it is also implicated in other felonies.

New law enforcement tools may be able to identify suspected criminal activity with increased accuracy, but they are not infallible. A qualified Kansas City attorney can help criminal defendants learn more about the implications of this facial-recognition software. All criminal defendants deserve to have their legal rights protected during their entire legal proceeding.

Source: Kansas City Star, "Kansas using face recognition tech to stem crime" Tony Rizzo, Jan. 20, 2014

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