London cops have admitted they gave photos of people to a property developer to use in a facial-recognition system in the heart of the UK capital.
Back in July, Siân Berry, co-leader of the Green Party of England and Wales, asked London Mayor Sadiq Khan whether the Met Police had collaborated with any retailers or other private companies in the operation of facial-recognition systems. A month later, Khan replied that the police force had not worked with any organisations on face-scanning tech in the capital beyond its own experiments.
However, that turned out to be incorrect. On Wednesday this week, the mayor revealed the cops had in actual fact handed over snaps of people to the private landlord for most of the busy King’s Cross area – which, it emerged last month, had set up facial-recognition cameras to snoop on thousands of Brits going about their day.
“The MPS [Metropolitan Police Service] has just now brought it to my attention that the original information they provided … was incorrect and they have in fact shared images related to facial recognition with King’s Cross Central Limited Partnership,” Khan said in an update, adding that this handover of photos ended sometime in 2018.