Over the last decade, we have seen a significant increase in the use of facial recognition software by law enforcement.  The technology is no-longer just a tool of federal agencies like the CIA, FBI, and Homeland Security.  The technology is no way more commonplace.

Not surprisingly, some people are concerned about how prevalent the technology is becoming.

In fact, the City of Portland has already put restrictions on the use of facial recognition technology.  Now, some Maine legislators want to limit how and when the technology can be used by police and other law enforcement agencies in Maine.

According to the KJ, LD 1585, a bill that was sponsored by Rep. Grayson Lookner, D-Portland, would limit the use of the technology to only serious crimes like rape and murder.

While some states have put limits on how the technology can be used, Maine's proposed bill would be the strictest.  The LD 1585 limits would apply to  state, county and municipal employees and agencies in Maine.  There are, and would continue to be, no limits on the use of the technology by federal agencies.

According to Lookner:

LD 1585 creates clear boundaries on how the government can use facial recognition technology, and it carefully defines how law enforcement can use the technology in investigations.  I’m proud of this bill and the process it went through, which included bringing law enforcement partners to the table.

The Legislature’s Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee voted 9-0 in favor of of the bill.  Next the bill will go to the Maine House of Representatives.  If it passes the House, it will go to the Maine Senate.  Finally, it would need to be signed by Governor Janet Mills.

Read the bill HERE

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