Friday, June 18, 2004

Nice Guardian article on biometrics, Biometrics - great hope for world security or triumph for Big Brother?

Liberty spokesman,Barry Hugill is quoted: "Once you begin to compile massive databases it's a matter of common sense that you are going to get the most horrendous mix-ups, with the wrong people being accused and the the wrong information being shared around the world."

Law enforcement must have enough technically well trained and experienced people and the best available technology to fight the bad guys and there also has to be checks and balances in the system. There is not a computer scientist in the world who knows how to create, secure and maintain the integrity in practice of massive international databases of the kind that are being discussed here. Blind faith in the technology is not going to work in this instance. The current state of affairs neither re-assures me that we have enough technically trained and experienced law enforcement personel or the best available technology appropriately focussed on the job of catching the real bad guys. It is a tough, complex systemic problem and it will not be addressed by an illusion that it is being tackled through huge investment in technologies that don't work

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