From the post:
Today the federal Government Accountability Office (GAO) finally published its exhaustive report on the FBI’s face recognition capabilities. The takeaway: FBI has access to hundreds of millions more photos than we ever thought. And the Bureau has been hiding this fact from the public—in flagrant violation of federal law and agency policy—for years.
According to the GAO Report, FBI’s Facial Analysis, Comparison, and Evaluation (FACE) Services unit not only has access to FBI’s Next Generation Identification (NGI) face recognition database of nearly 30 million civil and criminal mug shot photos, it also has access to the State Department’s Visa and Passport databases, the Defense Department’s biometric database, and the drivers license databases of at least 16 states. Totaling 411.9 million images, this is an unprecedented number of photographs, most of which are of Americans and foreigners who have committed no crimes.
I understand and share the concern over the FBI’s database of 411.9 million images from identification sources, but let’s be realistic about the FBI’s share of all the image data.
Not an exhaustive list but:
- Facebook: 300 million photos per day
- Instagram: Over 80 million photos and 40 billion photos shared so far
- YouTube: 300 hours of video every minute
Facebook alone is equaling the FBI photo count every 1.3 days. Moreover, Facebook data is tied to both Facebook and very likely, other social media data, unlike my driver’s license.
Instagram takes a little over 5 days to exceed the FBI image count. but like the little engine that could, it keeps trying.
I’m not sure how to count YouTube’s 300 hours of video every minute.
No reliable counts are available for porn images, which streamed from Pornhub in 2015, accounted for 1,892 petabytes of data.
The Pornhub data stream includes a lot of duplication but finding non-religious and reliable stats on porn is difficult. Try searching for statistics on porn images. Speculation, guesses, etc.
Based on those figures, it’s fair to say the number of images available to the FBI is somewhere North of 100 billion and growing.
Oh, you think non-public photos off-limits to the FBI?
Hmmm, so is lying to federal judges, or so they say.
The FBI may say they are following safeguards, etc., but once a agency develops a culture of lying “in the public’s interest,” why would you ever believe them?
If you believe the FBI now, shouldn’t you say: Shame on me?