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Scalable Measures for Automated Recognition Technologies

GoTriple's project summary

Automated recognition of individuals and/or pre-determined traits or risk factors/criteria lies at the basis, indeed is the very raison d’être, of smart surveillance systems. Yet new EU regulations and specifically those on information sharing between police and security forces explicitly prohibit automated decision-taking regarding individuals unless “authorised by a law which also lays down measures to safeguard the data subject’s legitimate interests” (art 7, CFD 2008/977/JHA). Where are these laws, what can these measures be and what else should the laws contain? Can the laws be technology-neutral but sector specific, thus permitting a measured approach to the appropriateness of smart surveillance technologies in key security applications? Can they be extended to all security applications of smart surveillance, even those not covered by CFD 2008/977/JHA or the proposed directive set to replace it? This project (SMART) addresses these and other questions through a comprehensive approach which combines a technical review of key application areas by sector with a review of existing pertinent legislation to then produce a set of guidelines and a model law compliant with CFD 2008/977/JHA and EU Directive 46/95 and the proposed successor legislation. The project first focuses on one meaning of “measures” i.e. it uses expertise from police and security forces from inside and outside the EU to “measure” (as in “calculate”) risk factors in a number of priority application areas for smart surveillance technologies including border control, crowd-control, counter-terrorism and e-government. Bringing together some of Europe’s leading experts on data protection with senior police officers responsible for using surveillance in the most CCTV-intensive cities in the world, SMART evaluates the appropriateness and available safeguards for on-line surveillance and associated risks inherent in data-sharing and exchange. Having thus identified appropriate instances of application as well as a number of technical, procedural and legal options for safeguards, the project moves on to create a tool-kit which would be useful to system designers, policy makers and legislative draughtsmen across Europe (and hopefully beyond). At this stage the project turns to a second meaning of “measures” i.e. it would bring to bear significant EU-wide expertise in data protection legislation in order to prepare a draft model law which would contain a number of measures providing adequate safeguards for the data subject and thus rendering use of smart surveillance compliant with CFD 2008/977/JHA and its proposed successor and other applicable regulations.

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