Clearview AI App: Protects The Fenced, Imprisons The Protected

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Technology, like everything, has a flipside. While one boosts growth and development, the other infuses malicious activities. A report by The New York Times has brought the Clearview AI app to light. It's an application so powerful that it could present you the data on anyone you meet on the street, which can be prove to be a double-edged sword.

Clearview AI App: How Does It Work?
 

Clearview AI App: How Does It Work?

The app gathers data that is publicly available. Popular social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and more have tons of information about a user, easily available. However, scraping information or adding it to directories is prohibited by Facebook policies. Twitter also says it prohibits the use of its data.

How Is It Dangerous?

How Is It Dangerous?

The app is capable of furnishing information like name, address, and even phone number. The AI app is great for law enforcement, but at the same time, it can be misused by stalkers and other people with malicious intent. The report states that advocates worry that this type of facial-recognition AI app could be a boon for stalkers.

What's worse, the Clearview AI app is a direct threat to women. Stalking and online abuse have been a constant problem, especially for women. Abusers, stalkers or anyone who wishes to find out anything about a person for nefarious purpose can also abuse the app. The app has risked the safety of women both online and in real life, advocates cited.

 

App For Stalkers?
 

App For Stalkers?

For now, Clearview says that it's selling its tools and services to law enforcement. But for how long? The AI tool in the wrong hands could be used for abuse, stalking, and harassment. As it is, Stalking has been an issue for many women online without an app that could trace down their details using their face. It could get worse with this app.

"This would be impossible to prevent if the software was made available to the public - a scenario that Clearview investors have acknowledged is possible," says Jo O'Reilly, a privacy advocate, in a statement to Digital Trends. Abusers are always looking for a new tool in their toolbox for harassment.

 

What’s The Solution?

What’s The Solution?

Every new technological solution launched in the market ultimately finds a way to be misused. Be it data thefts, hacking or sometimes even in terms of monetary loss. However, privacy and safety need to be built into an app from the beginning, voices Rachel Gibson, senior technology safety specialist for the National Network to End Domestic Violence to Digital Trends.

"We think of it as new tech, old behavior. People were still being raped in taxis [before Uber], but we have to think about how technology these days can facilitate old behaviors like stalking and assault," she opined. While the Clearview app is being used by law enforcement now, it raises questions on how it could be beneficial for the general public.

"Making these things for public consumption puts survivors at risk, and we need to think about the unintended consequences," she said. But offline and online privacy and security, especially for women is still an open question. Clearview has not responded to comment.

 

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