Did a university use facial recognition for IT student protesters?

Did a university use facial recognition for IT student protesters?

In late September, Mars Fernandez-Burgos, who holds a doctorate in counseling psychology from the University of Miami, received a one-line email from an assistant to a dean of school students. He and eight others were asked to attend a zoom meeting to discuss the “September 4 incident.”

Fernandez-Burgos is a member of the University of Miami Staff Student Alliance (UMESA). Weeks ago, he attended a campus demonstration Govt Security and sick pay for contract workers such as restaurant workers and guards. Later, university officials ignored the student body’s efforts for a meeting. She doesn’t understand why Dean is reaching out now.

“Is this meeting mandatory?” Asked Fernandez-Burgos.

Dean answered themselves.

“I believe this discussion is essential to understanding the principles of utilizing university space,” wrote Ryan Holmes, dean of students. “It should not last long, the content should not be designed to be dictatorial and not hostile in nature.”

“Not hostile,” the email promised. The ones that followed in the weeks that followed were accurate.

Fernandez-Burgos and other students accuse the University of Miami Police Department (UMPT) of using unpublished material Facial recognition Organization at the September 4 demonstration to identify the nine students who were invited to the meeting. University officials refuse to use the technology, although the documents state that the university police have access to facial recognition databases.

“I never thought about facial recognition,” says Fernandez-Burgos. The university said, “That kind of thing is not really public. You have some professors who have done some studies on privacy and things, but I don’t know much about that. ”

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At the meeting, Fernandez-Burgos says Holmes asked the students to meet him because he had not booked campus space for the protest. The content of the demonstration was not an issue, but officials were concerned about responsibility, security and ensuring that places were not over-recorded.

Holmes told students that another UMESA member, Fernandes-Burgos and Stephen Wood, who attended the protest and the meeting, used campus police software to analyze camera footage from the protest to identify the students.

Holmes mentioned WIRED to a university spokesman. In a statement, the spokesman said, “As part of our efforts to ensure the health and safety of our community, especially during these epidemics, university administrators met with students who failed to follow the appropriate procedure when organizing a private event.”

None of the students who attended the meeting faced disciplinary action, but Wood said he believes they were flagged because protesters criticized the university. “The home message we got was,‘ We’re looking at you, ’he says.

Elsewhere, police are inside Philadelphia And Columbia, South Carolina, Is said to have used facial recognition to identify and arrest those who took part in protests this summer following the assassination of George Floyd. Civil rights organizations say there is a risk of being identified and targeted Cooling effect Regarding the ability of people to protest legally.

Meanwhile, more and more colleges are adopting face recognition methods for safety Public health activities Against Govt-19, And to Proctor Remote exams, step Fight for the future, A digital rights advocacy group.

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In Miami, university police manually analyzed camera footage from a demonstration or used social media to locate protesters. But before the September 4 protest, the university police chief admitted that there were cameras capable of recognizing faces.

In 2019, the Orlando Sentinel Named University Police Department A user Face Analysis Comparison and Selection System (FACES), 33 million photo database. Images in FACES are taken from driver’s license and law enforcement photos. UMPD is listed as a user A 2016 PowerPoint The Sheriff’s Office, Phineas County, Florida, maintains the FACES database.

As of October 15, UMPT President David Rivero’s resume includes references to cameras, “motion detection, facial recognition, object detection and more” According to Fight for the future. Rivero said Miami hurricane, Student newspaper, called these terms “false”. Within a day, he had no rules Posted summary, Which still represents a university-wide organization with more than 1,000 cameras “with more video analysis.”

Rivero said Hurricane How UMPT and the Florida Law Enforcement Department use video surveillance. “Our camera system catches someone stealing your laptop. We have that person’s good face. I can submit that face to FDLE. They will be arrested and try to match it with someone who looks like that picture,” Rivero said.

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