Facial Recognition Technology in Public Housing Prompts Backlash

The federal government does not regulate facial recognition software in any way, and HUD officials say they have no plans to create any regulations.

This year in Detroit, crews working for the city’s public housing authority cut down a row of bushy trees that had shaded the entryways to two public housing units known as Sheridan I and II.

Their aim: to give newly installed security cameras an unobstructed view of the hulking, gray edifices, so round-the-clock video footage could be made available to the Detroit Police Department and its new facial recognition software whenever the Detroit Public Housing Commission files a police report.

“I think that police departments won’t make frivolous claims based solely on technology,” said Sandra Henriquez, the commission’s executive director. She added, “I think that they will use the technology as one tool that they use in bringing people into the criminal justice system.”

To critics of the widening reach of facial recognition software, such assurances are likely to ring hollow. As the software improves and as the price drops, the technology is becoming ubiquitous — on wearable police cameras, in private home security systems and at sporting events. Landlords are considering the technology as a replacement for their tenants’ key fobs, a visual check-in that could double as a general surveillance system.

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But the backlash has already begun. San Francisco; Somerville, Mass.; and Oakland, Calif., all banned facial recognition software this year. And Congress is taking a look, worried that an unproven technology will ensnare innocent people while diminishing privacy rights.

“We can’t continue to expand the footprint of a technology and the reach of it when there are no guardrails for these emerging technologies to protect civil rights,” said Representative Ayanna S. Pressley, Democrat of Massachusetts, and a sponsor of the No Biometric Barriers to Housing Act, which would ban facial recognition systems in federally funded public housing. It would also require that the Department of Housing and Urban Development send to Congress a detailed report on the software.

At this point, the federal government does not regulate facial recognition software in any way, and HUD officials say they have no plans to create any regulations.

But the technology’s spread is raising serious concerns — on the political right as well as the left. The Chinese government’s use of a vast, secret system of advanced facial recognition technology to track and control its Uighur Muslim minority has set off international outrage. It has also demonstrated how functional the technology has become.

In one month this year, law enforcement in the central Chinese city of Sanmenxia, along the Yellow River, screened images of residents 500,000 times to determine if they were Uighurs.

More read at https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/24/us/politics/facial-recognition-technology-housing.html

A guide to practical Risk Management – Applying ISO14971 and IEC62304

It will help to comply with regulatory requirements with minimized overhead and resource burden.

Gaps, incorrect or incomplete implementation of safety functionality can delay or make the certification/approval of medical products impossible. Most activities cannot be retroactively performed since they are closely linked into the development lifecycle. Diligent, complete and correct implementation of risk management from the start of product development is therefore imperative. This course will introduce all necessary steps to design, implement and test critical medical devices in a regulatory compliant environment. This course will additionally address the software risk management and the resulting interfaces to device level risk management.

To comprehensively summarize all risk related activities and to demonstrate the safe properties of a device the ‘Safety Case’ or ‘Assurance Case’ document is a well-established method to collect all safety related information together in one place. This documentation will most likely become mandatory for all devices (currently only required for FDA infusion pump submissions). This course will introduce the basic concepts and content of safety assurance cases and will illustrate the usefulness for internal and external review of safety related information.

The course will introduce the main elements of risk management with emphasis on the application of risk management principles and requirements to the medical device development cycle. Risk management has become the method of choice to ensure an effective and safety oriented device development. International consensus, reflected in globally applicable standard requirements, has led to risk management being a mandatory component of almost any activity in the medical device industry.

The course will emphasize the implementation of risk management into the development and maintenance process. It will use real-life examples and proven tips and tricks to make the application of risk management a practical and beneficial undertaking. This seminar will address the system level issues of risk management as well as the increasingly important software and usability related issues of critical systems. It will help to comply with regulatory requirements with minimized overhead and resource burden. To make the combines effort to design, implement and verify a safe device transparent the concept of an assurance case will be introduced.

The course is mainly based on international consensus requirements such as ISO14971, IEC62366 and IEC62304. It will cover European (MDD), US (FDA) and international risk management requirements from a regulatory and practitioner’s perspective.

Following personnel will benefit from the course:

  • Senior quality managers
  • Quality professionals
  • Regulatory professionals
  • Compliance professionals
  • Project managers
  • Design engineers
  • Software engineers
  • Process owners
  • Quality engineers
  • Quality auditors
  • Medical affairs
  • Legal Professionals