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Facial recognition tools are becoming popular with retailers

In Louisville, Kentucky and elsewhere, unsuspecting shoppers may find themselves banned from a retail establishment without their prior knowledge. The actual reason for the banishment may be due to facial recognition software.

The use of the software is becoming more popular among shopkeepers as a means of security. Modern security cameras may catch a shoplifter in the act and record the face of the culprit. Software will catalogue facial features into a program for future reference.

When patrons enter the establishment, a camera will scan those entering the business and cross-reference a person against the database of suspected offenders. A security officer will be alerted and may ask the individual to leave. As with other forms of blacklists, the database is often shared with other businesses in a central database.

Sometimes, a security company will perform this service for a number of businesses, utilizing the same software and facial recognition data. These services are growing: The industry is expected to grow into a $10 billion industry within the next 6 years.

There is a downside to this practice as facial recognition tools are not 100 percent accurate. Unwary customers may be the victim of an incorrect identification and be punished for the mistake. Civil liberty organizations believe that the system may create an unwanted invasion of privacy. Many feel that with expanding technologies, regulations must be created to ensure that tracking technology is not used for improper purposes. To date, some have proposed legislation but without success.

A person charged with a crime due to improper tracking devices, or faulty facial recognition tools, could face serious issues in a courtroom. At times like these, an experienced criminal defense attorney may be a helpful asset to the accused.

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