Police given facial recognition powers to search driving licence database

20/12/2023 | The Guardian

The new UK criminal justice bill is set to allow the police or the National Crime Agency (NCA) to run facial recognition searches on a database containing images of the country's 50 million driving licence holders. This move has been criticised by privacy campaigners, who argue it could put every driver in the country in a permanent police lineup. The legislation would provide the police with powers to search driving licence records for a match to put a name to an image collected on CCTV or shared on social media.

While access to the UK's driving licence records is not referenced in the bill or its explanatory notes, Home Secretary James Cleverly would only need to establish "driver information regulations" to enable the searches and will only need to consult police bodies according to the bill.

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UK Driving License

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