‘The EU is laying the groundwork for a massive international facial recognition database that may someday hook into the one maintained by the US, according to leaked internal documents.
National police forces of 10 EU member states are calling for a legal framework to create a massive system of interlinked facial recognition databases “as quickly as possible,” a report leaked to the Intercept on Friday reveals. Austria is leading the way on the project, which was still in its early phases as of November, when the report initially circulated among EU officials.
Produced as part of a project to expand Prüm, the EU-wide database-cross-referencing system that already allows for all-at-once scanning of individual DNA, fingerprint, and vehicle registration databases, the report calls for EU legislation that would create and connect country-level facial recognition databases, potentially all the way to the US. Because the US already has a Prüm-like exchange in place with countries that are part of the Visa Waiver Program, including most EU member states, some – including the alarmed EU official who allegedly leaked the report to the Intercept – believe any future facial recognition database network would include the US by default.’