back to article Notting Hill Carnival spycams: Met Police rolls out real-time live face-spotting tech

London’s Metropolitan Police will trial an automated facial recognition system to identify people at this weekend's Notting Hill Carnival as the government continues to drag its feet on the use of the technology. This is is only the second time that British cops have openly trialled live automated facial recognition (AFR) …

  1. Christoph Silver badge

    That could mean that anyone resembling an image on that database gets stopped and asked to "verify their identity" every few minutes through the whole carnival.

    And when they get decidedly stroppy about it after a couple of days of this, then obviously the police officer involved would have to nick them.

    1. NoneSuch

      Body Cams

      A copy of any footage from Police body cams should be sent directly to Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary as well as the local station. That way video of abuse and wrong doing isn't "lost" or "deleted" "accidentally".

      That video copy might stop a few people from falling down the stairs in the local pokey.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Body Cams

        @NoneSuch; "That video copy might stop a few people from falling down the stairs in the local pokey."

        It certainly would!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Body Cams

          Fabulous (and the follow ons) well raised sir (or madam)

        2. Keef

          Re: Body Cams

          Let's not forget this one...

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BO8EpfyCG2Y

    2. Matt Bryant Silver badge
      FAIL

      Re: Christoph

      "That could mean that anyone resembling an image on that database gets stopped and asked to "verify their identity" every few minutes through the whole carnival....." No more likely than if the coppers were using the old mugshots handed out at briefings (which they will be using in parallel with the facial recog cameras anyway).

      "....And when they get decidedly stroppy about it after a couple of days of this...." If they are stupid or immature enough to "get stroppy" and act in an abusive or threatening manner then yes, they will get nicked, just like any other arsehole that doesn't know how to behave in public.

    3. Bernard M. Orwell Silver badge

      "That could mean that anyone resembling an image on that database gets stopped and asked to "verify their identity" every few minutes through the whole carnival."

      Papers please, citizen.

      How comfortable are we with that?

  2. Bogle
    Joke

    V

    The carnival is going to look decidedly odd with so many members of Anonymous attending ...

    1. Adam Jarvis

      Re: V

      The carnival is going to look decidedly White with so many feeling "pre-victimised" by Police.

      Stop and Search/Arrest rates disproportionally affect Black/Asian people in London.

      This is a headline grabbing Police en-masse surveillance policy that disproportionally will effect and put off Black/Asian people from attending, more than it would put off White people from attending, just as a matter of how this intrusive Camera technology will be perceived.

      1. bitmap animal

        Re: V

        To Adam Jarvis re "Stop and Search/Arrest rates disproportionally affect Black/Asian people in London."

        This is from Wikipedia so WMMV, but does indicate there is sound maths behind some of this. I'm not saying there isn't a problem with the police, but they are the people dealing with these instances on a daily basis. If you see 67% of the gun crime is being comitted by 10% of the people then that must affect how your approach the investigations.

        Figures from the Office for National Statistics showed that in 2007 an estimated 10.6 percent of London's population of 7,556,900 were black

        In June 2010 The Sunday Telegraph, through a Freedom of Information Act request, obtained statistics on accusations of crime broken down by race from the Metropolitan Police Service.[n 2] The figures showed that the majority of males who were accused of violent crimes in 2009–10 were black. Of the recorded 18,091 such accusations against males, 54 percent accused of street crimes were black; for robbery, 59 percent; and for gun crimes, 67 percent

        1. Adam Jarvis

          Re: V

          You can't compare London in 2007, or even 2010 to London in (mid) 2016, in terms of ethnicity/diversity mix. That's just a statistically pointless ramble.

        2. Christoph Silver badge

          Re: V

          Stop and search more blacks than whites. Investigate blacks more than whites. Let white person off as 'having a bit of fun', but arrest and convict black person for the same behaviour.

          Oh look, crime statistics prove blacks commit more crimes than whites.

          Plus of course that blacks have more trouble getting good education and a good job.

          "The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread." -- Anatole France

          1. P. Lee Silver badge

            Re: V

            >Plus of course that blacks have more trouble getting good education and a good job.

            Neither a lack of education nor poverty are an excuse for crime. If the crime is begging or stealing bread, I"ll be happy to revisit the issue.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: V

              'Neither a lack of education nor poverty are an excuse for crime'

              Assume you're saying this from your relaxed detached non rented gated tree lined house/community with a lovely summer meadow of a Garden for your children to play in, or similar.

              If we're talking Education, I'd say it was a lack of Education regards rank and file Police Officers the reason the Police concentrate on Black Petty crime, disproportionally to more complex White Collar fraud.

              In most industries, complex problem solving, is people what seem to thrive upon. The Police seem to always swing towards tick box Policing and fines, you could argue that its their own lack of Education (low entry grades) is the reason for this.

              You could also argue they are fire fighting crime to the best of their ability, but plenty of Financial Banking crime since 2008 and other White Collar crime, that was is never followed up/People locked up for, which ended with a slap (more like tap) on the wrist. I'd put this down to "People with influence" really been in control of Police choices to concentrate on.

              Hence why Chelsea Flower Show (as someone mentioned) wasn't used for this first technology trial, after all a face is face. That's an example of the choice of venue been chosen to test this, by people with influence. "Test it on the plebs first".

          2. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

            Re: V

            blacks have more trouble getting good education and a good job

            Any explanation why? The assumption is always that there is some evil anti-black conspiracy here. Maybe blacks just aren't in the mood of getting good education and a good job (and social justice warriors take then go out and complain loudly on their behalf). I dunno, just an idea.

          3. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

            Re: V

            Well according to the GCSE stats from last week, it is WHITE Lower Class Boys who are doing worst at school not black boys.

            Our (hence the A/C) graduate intake this year will be very multi-ethnic and at least 50% who are not white or male. The largest sector is South Asian women who are traditionally very disenfranchised by their society. Second is those from an Afro-Carribean background. Some are children of African Immigrants but still Black to those who want to put them down.

        3. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: V

          "obtained statistics on accusations of crime broken down by race"

          Please note very very carefully the use of the word "accusations", not convictions or even arrests.

          It almost makes you wonder why the Sunday Telegraph made an FOI request for accusations rather than arrests or convictions. Is that more indicative of an agenda rather than useful information?

          1. hellsatan

            Re: V

            I guarantee they made FOI requests for all those things, and (in good faith ofc) forgot to publish the information which failed to support their worldview

      2. William 3 Bronze badge

        Re: V

        Fuckoff with your anti white racism Adam.

      3. Matt Bryant Silver badge
        FAIL

        Re: Adam Jarvis Re: V

        "The carnival is going to look decidedly White with so many feeling "pre-victimised" by Police groundlessly paranoid.....' TFTFY. There will be over a million people at the carnival. Given the carnival goers' ethnic balance the figure would have to be closer to 200,000 arrests, all black, before you could justify such a stupid suggestion.

    2. emmanuel goldstein

      Re: V

      I propose a crowdfunded Scramble Suit.

      Seriously.

      1. Scroticus Canis
        Gimp

        Re: V - "I propose a crowdfunded Scramble Suit.

        A simple burka or gimp suit would do the job but you might stand out a bit unless it was in festive colours.

        1. Loud Speaker

          Re: V - "I propose a crowdfunded Scramble Suit.

          I strongly advise you DO NOT ATTEND IN A BURKINI!

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: V - "I propose a crowdfunded Scramble Suit.

            I strongly advise you DO NOT ATTEND IN A BURKINI!

            .. which, ironically, does nothing to hide your face..

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Alien

    Face recoginition? At a carnival?

    Sounds like an outbreak of psychedelic face painting might be in order

    ;)

    In lieu of a Ziggy icon --->

  4. chivo243 Silver badge
    Black Helicopters

    We're only paranoid...

    ...until they get us ;-}

  5. Alister Silver badge

    So, in your title image, which of the apparent gem stones is the one with the camera in it?

    Is it the big red one in the middle of her forehead, or is it the smaller green one mounted um, further down?

  6. Tim Jenkins

    Maybe it's because it's Friday

    but I'm very much enjoying the distinguishing biometric features of the young lady in the picture.

    1. Kubla Cant Silver badge

      Re: Maybe it's because it's Friday

      I'm very much enjoying the distinguishing biometric features of the young lady in the picture

      It's her face you're supposed to be looking at.

      1. Teiwaz Silver badge

        Re: Maybe it's because it's Friday

        It's her face you're supposed to be looking at.

        - Are you sure about that?

        "“over 19 million custody images, which may include images other than of faces"

        - If you aren't worried by facial recognition tech, you'll be scared by what else they also want to identify (Moon pies would the least concern).

        1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
          Facepalm

          Re: Teiwaz Re: Maybe it's because it's Friday

          ".....which may include images other than of faces....." That would be tattoos, scars, birthmarks, deformities or any other distinguishing marks or features. Criminals are often caught out by their tattoos (nobody point it out to Christoph but the coppers arrested a white guy for that crime!).

  7. alain williams Silver badge

    How long will they keep the collected mug shots ?

    You might think that they are useless, but then the police correlate pictures with phone IMEI, do that the several times that these are collected and you will be able to isolate/de-group individuals and so get a mug shot of everyone who had a 'phone that day.

    1. Kane Silver badge
      Big Brother

      Re: How long will they keep the collected mug shots ?

      I wonder how many IMSI catchers will be deployed?

  8. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    An improvement on their previous face recognition

    If face != white AND sex == male:

    select from [ stop and search, arrest, give a kicking to ]

    1. DougS Silver badge

      Re: An improvement on their previous face recognition

      If (sex == female) {

      lower_camera_angle(0.4 meters);

      enable_IR_see_thru_clothing_mode();

      }

      Is that what they meant "may include images other than of faces"?

  9. Kubla Cant Silver badge

    Of all the carnivals in the world, why is the Notting Hill carnival always referenced without an article? Not "a carnival" or even "the carnival", just "Carnival".

    The self-important implication is that this is the original and best, the Platonic ideal of all carnivals. In fact it's comparatively recent and derivative. If it's because "Carnival" is supposed to be a festival like Christmas or Easter, then shouldn't it be celebrated before Lent?

    1. Elmer Phud Silver badge

      Carnival just is.

      That's why.

      It doesn't(didn't) belong to anyone but the local people - no church, no state, no royalty -- just people.

    2. Mark 85 Silver badge

      @Kubla Cant

      El Reg being international, I'm wondering why that is also.. There's "Carnival" (just Carnival) in many places around the world. Rio and New Orleans come to mind as well as a few others.

  10. tiggity Silver badge

    Forbidden

    "database has been populated with images of individuals who are forbidden from attending Carnival, as well as individuals wanted by police who it is believed may attend Carnival to commit offences"

    Forbidden?

    Wonder what someone had to do to achieve that? All a bit Orwellian (though all sorts of dubious bail conditions get applied these days, never mind iffy ASBOs and other lifestyle restricting orders on non guilty people)

    Maybe the carnival should forbid people from attending who ain't got no rhythm, that would scupper most of the met.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Forbidden

      Most likely banned because of known gang affiliation or previous for stabbing.

      1. Elmer Phud Silver badge

        Re: Forbidden

        or nicked for a spliff a few times.

        It ain't just yer cardboard cutout, the stereotype.

    2. scrubber

      Re: Forbidden

      "Wonder what someone had to do to achieve that?"

      Be accused of a crime, found not guilty then stitched up by plod and a friendly judge because they know, in their heart of hearts, that you're a wrong 'un.

      O Justice, Justice, wherefore art thou Justice?

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Time for some face paint

    https://ahprojects.com/projects/cv-dazzle/

    1. Jason Bloomberg Silver badge
      Big Brother

      Re: Time for some face paint

      But then one simply falls into the category of "people who seem they may have something to hide" who police feel entitled to haras^W question further.

      Standing up to an emerging police state is not without its inconveniences and consequences. In fact it is intended to be that way; comply or have your life made a misery. Most folks will comply simply to have some semblance of reasonable life, leaving those who don't the ones the police take most interest in.

      And it is not uncommon (for those resisting) to find those (who have surrendered to complying) standing on the side of the cops declaring non-compliers deserve everything they get while posting as such in the comments section of the Mail and Express every chance they get.

      And, thanks to Brexit, and the "we don't need no stinking human rights laws" brigade, it's only going to get worse. I suspect it will become too ironic by 2045 to celebrate the WWII defeat of fascism. Though hypocrisy may see us through. It usually does.

      1. Elmer Phud Silver badge

        Re: Time for some face paint

        They could try the 'must have something to hide' gamble but there are plenty of lawyers who would question the need to stop people joining in the festivities, fortunately.

      2. Mark 85 Silver badge

        @Jason Bloomberg -- Re: Time for some face paint

        The interesting (for some value of interesting) part is that those who intend to do evil, bad, wrong, probably won't wear facepaint and thus not be questioned. One of the first rules is "be inconspicuous" and don't draw attention to yourself.

      3. Matt Bryant Silver badge
        Coat

        Re: Jason Bloomberg Re: Time for some face paint

        ".... thanks to Brexit, and the "we don't need no stinking human rights laws" brigade, it's only going to get worse....." Gosh, Jason, you make it sound just so unbearable, would you like some directions to Calais? I'd even be happy to drop you in Dover if you can't afford the train fare.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Jason Bloomberg Time for some face paint

          ".... thanks to Brexit, and the "we don't need no stinking human rights laws" brigade, it's only going to get worse....." Gosh, Jason, you make it sound just so unbearable, would you like some directions to Calais? I'd even be happy to drop you in Dover if you can't afford the train fare.

          Welcome to the sorites paradox as applied to Human Rights (just to avoid pedants pointing out that the boiling frog syndrome has been disproven)..

  12. Mayhem

    And how many people will direct the police

    That my facial recognition is up here

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Paty like it's 1989

    A Carnival of Revolution: Central Europe 1989

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Carnival-Revolution-Central-Europe-1989/dp/0691050287

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Big Brother

      Party like it's 1984

      FTFY

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Its a Canival FFS, not a Police Identity Parade. Leave People be.

    "as well as individuals wanted by police who it is believed may attend Carnival to commit offences"

    I'm assuming that wording was written and approved by kill joy Theresa May.

    Sounds like an extension of Theresa May's 'go home vans'.

    If you have overstayed your Student Visa//Visa/Work Permit or an illegal immigrant (given the ethnic diversity attending this event, concentrated in this area), you're committing an offence? Sound like as much.

    To translate technically for you - That's pretty much a Cart Blanche open ended, Data Slurp, to test Facial Data against the whole of the UK Passport Database (to also see you is attending this event, and from where).

    We'll find out later 'post-Canival processing' - its a trial system linked up to all the faces stored on UK Passport Database, to check for illegal immigrants, to give Theresa May some bonus points by Brexiteers.

    What not clear is this a data slurp with 'live' processing of 'select individauls', or will also be a retained mass data slurp for post-Carnival processing through Hadoop data crunching systems against Interpol/UK's Passport Database.

    It really amounts to passive-aggressive supression by the Police that has a domestic violence type whiff/attitude about it, to keep people in check.

    Better idea: Turn off your Cameras, and enjoy the weekend, it achieves nothing but resentment. Leave people be, its a carnival, not an Police Identity Parade.

    1. Elmer Phud Silver badge

      Re: Its a Canival FFS, not a Police Identity Parade. Leave People be.

      They've been recording faces at Carnival for decades.

      I remember when they went from a battery of stills cameras on the WestWay overpass to adding video cameras.

      It's important to remember the history of the area and the old, old antipathy between the police and the black community. It was a really run down, area way back.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Its a Canival FFS, not a Police Identity Parade. Leave People be.

        It was a really run down, area way back.

        And now? Average price of a two bedroom apartment is £1.3 million. Which rather puts a different perspective on what this carnival "owned by the locals" actually means.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Its a Canival FFS, not a Police Identity Parade. Leave People be.

        If Police Enforcement at this year's Notting Hill is anything like the latest (head clipping/revenue generating) 24/7 hidden "stealth" ANPR Hadecs 3 Cameras on the M4 at J19 East&Westbound Bristol, people attending will get £100 fine for having their shoe lace undone.

        1. Keef

          Re: Its a Canival FFS, not a Police Identity Parade. Leave People be.

          As far as I'm aware having a shoelace undone isn't a crime, not saying Plod wouldn't try and fit you up for it thought.

          But if you choose to drive above the legal speed limit on the M4 junction 19 (or your own choice of motorway and junction) and get nicked for it you only have yourself to blame.

          Don't want to get nicked for speeding, don't speed fuckwit.

    2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: Its a Canival FFS, not a Police Identity Parade. Leave People be.

      "What not clear is this a data slurp with 'live' processing of 'select individauls', or will also be a retained mass data slurp for post-Carnival processing "

      That was my first thought on reading this article too. Will the Met be retaining all of these images or will they delete the "negative match" images immediately? My feeling is that ALL of the data will be retained. After all, they've already been told the "custody" image database they are using to match with is illegal and they've still not sanitised that yet.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Its a Canival FFS, not a Police Identity Parade. Leave People be.

        Theresa May is in charge, of course, all the data will be retained. She has form in this area as Home Secretary.

        And they will keep post-processing this data, individual Faces from Thousands of video stills - over and over (until the data loses its value over time) against various Government (and non Gov-Credit reference agency data-they have photos too) databases at their disposal.

        It seems to say, anyone attending the Notting Hill Carnival 'could' have a subversive tendency against the State.

        Someone in charge is a "complete obsessive" who loves to dot their i's, cross their t's. They seem to be striving towards live maps/data of any individual at any time, Employment history / Credit history data / Medical history and doesn't seem to want to stop at anything less.

        Monies used, that would be better making sure people were kept out of Poverty and Crime.

        ----------

        This has moved past the point of proportional use of data by the state to keep us "safe", its now a disproportionate invasion of People's Privacy, with the argument, if you are technically unaware it's happening, is not an invasion of your Privacy.

  15. phillupson

    Signed up just to say

    Hopefully they're running Windows 10, in which case we have nothing to worry about.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Alien

      Re: Signed up just to say

      Welcome!

    2. Jack of Shadows Silver badge

      Re: Signed up just to say

      Hopefully they're running Windows 10, in which case we have nothing to worry about.

      Except, perhaps, Microsoft accumulating the (second?) largest facial recognition database (after Facebook?) and selling it to every government it can.

      Can't tell if I making a joke or not. That's depressing.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Worth reading/linking to this too. (to join the dots so to speak)

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/08/12/run_but_cant_hide_scientists_brew_blurbusting_face_recognition/

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Mirrored face paint?

    A large mirror as face paint might be the order of the day, not sure who the criminals are nowadays.

  18. moiety

    So they're illegally using 16,644,143 (almost 1/3 of the entire bloody population) custody images that were taken to be used for a very specific set of purposes and many of which should -by law-have been deleted by now in order to perform -without consent- a fresh privacy dry-arse-fucking.

    It's "policing by consent" you utter prongpipes. That's not what this is. As the ones meant to be upholding the law can you REALLY not see the problem here?

  19. Hollerithevo Silver badge

    My favorute quotation from this

    "This is so communities can be sure that they are being protected by this technology rather than spied on."

    Oh yes, communities that go to Carnival clamor to be protected by facial recognition, because over the decades they have learned that the Police are their best friends and work tirelessly to be fair and even-handed in their, y'know, stop and search, etc.

    Of course they can be sure they are not being spied upon.

    How could this possibly be spying!?! Non comprendo.

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: My favorute quotation from this

      "How could this possibly be spying!?! Non comprendo."

      Well, to be fair, if this is "live" as implied by the article, images could be deleted as soon as there's a "no match" result returned by the system so no, that would not be spying. Except we all know that it's highly probable that this data will be retained for some indeterminate purpose for some equally indeterminate length of time.

    2. William 3 Bronze badge

      Re: My favorute quotation from this

      Those pesky police, arresting those who stab others at this shitfest.

      How racist they are.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: My favorute quotation from this

        Those pesky police, arresting those who stab others at this shitfest.

        How racist they are.

        Ah, but that's the exact issue here: what they do does NOTHING (zero, nada etc) to PREVENT crime. Personally, I don't care one whit that some idiot will be arrested later for stabbing me - I'll still be dead.

        The money they throw out at high tech toys would be better spent by having people in the crowd but no, that would be dangerous. Better let the general public take the risk..

        1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
          FAIL

          Re: AC Re: My favorute quotation from this

          "....The money they throw out at high tech toys would be better spent by having people in the crowd...." Wow, you really are determined to hate! If you had ever been to the Carnival (and I have, thanks), you'd know there is a large Police presence with plenty of boots on the ground amongst the crowd. This presence prevents a lot of crime, but they can't be everywhere and crimes still happen. Cameras with facial recognition software helps pick up the criminals the boots on the ground miss, and advertising the fact the Police have such tools also helps deter some of the smarter criminals.

          ".....but no, that would be dangerous. Better let the general public take the risk....." In case you missed it, the Police wear stab-proof vests at such events because they are very much at risk of being stabbed but the people they arrest. It's not the only risk they take, thousands of UK policemen and women having died whilst serving the public. You also seem very determined to ignore the real threat to the public from criminal gangs, especially young Londoners Just because you want to hate the Police.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: AC My favorute quotation from this

            The only dislike I would attest to is stupid funding decisions that make no practical sense. There is never enough money to pay for enough officers on the beat, but always for high tech toys that only affect statistics, but not crime on the ground.

            Surveillance cameras are after-the-event items (and I'd say we have plenty of them by now). Even when you're live monitoring a crowd you'll never be in time to prevent someone from being mugged or even killed, and most criminals are aware enough to hide their face and wear anonymous clothing (it's auto-selective - the dumb ones get picked up so eventually only the smart ones stay free, and they're the really dangerous ones). Let me add some practical experience here: I wouldn't put my faith in facial recognition just yet.

            The only useful cams I can see are body cams, because they can offer independent collaboration of something goes wrong. The only way I can see us earning back the public's trust is by transparency.

            No camera can replace an officer sensing the atmosphere and acting on cries for help. Cutting funding for officers on the beat is one of the most dangerous things that has ever been done to the tax paying public.

  20. Scroticus Canis
    Meh

    Meh - 16 Million images is not 16 million individuals

    Custody images: one face on, one (or two) from the side(s) = 8 million people (or less) and that's not allowing for the repeat arrestees, some of whom have many returns to custody. Am I on the Daily Wail site by mistake?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Meh - 16 Million images is not 16 million individuals

      Two days of 24/7 intrusive recording of faces at eye level by a mass network of cameras, in a predomiinately Black/Asian Carnival is not a small scale trial of live face-spotting tech.

      Its a mass Data slurp on an epic scale, with a racial 'Immigration flouting' bias, which will be processed/analysed against Immigration/next years Notting Hill data, and so force for data differences.

      And will be linked to IMEI data from phones, as well as Wifi, with attempts to infect devices of people of Interest.

      Let's at least tell it as it is.

      No harm done obviously /{sarcasm} to those ethnically diverse communities just trying (for a couple of days at least), to integrate, to enjoy each other's company.

      The problem nowadays, is Police just see these type of events as potential 'Honeypots' rather than what it is, a Carnival.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Meh - 16 Million images is not 16 million individuals

        predomiinately Black/Asian Carnival

        Recent carnivals have had a substantial white majority - the people from other parts of Europe probably outnumber the black attendance. Of course this does not apply to all areas for the carnival - with over a million people there, spread over about 4 square miles, there will be loads of variation.

  21. Loud Speaker

    Carnival violence (risk of)

    Just in case anyone here doesn't know, there are quite often "violent incidents" at carnival, however, the amount of violence is low compared to even ONE cup final. Bear in mind that the attendance is the equivalent of fourty (40) cup finals, the weather is usually hot (unlike at cup finals), and there is nothing else in London to do that is free, is extremely low compared to what would probably be the case with no carnival.

    The Police antipathy to carnival has on many occasions been intentionally stirred up by the way the police on the beat are managed: eg (historically) keeping the police in confined spaces without adequate food and drink until after the press have gone home, employing police from areas where there are no black people, issuing them with walkie-talkies that can't connect to the London system, etc.

    The police generally tend to act as if anyone who is not wearing a blue uniform is a criminal, especially if black. They also seem to think that because they (the police) are able to coordinate their actions, the carnival goers, most of whom know only a few people there, are able to do the same, and act "in concert". So they assume that if three guys on a street corner have a "barney" then the other million or so people there are somehow involved.

    Who polices the police? Do I need to ask?

    1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  22. Marketing Hack Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Well, at least the cops are deploying facial recognition sparingly...

    For now...as far as we know...

    I also like the mugshot photograph storage system that can't handle complex data retention policies. Delete mugshots over 5 years old? Except when corresponding code applies to rape, terrorism, murder or assault?

    How hard can either of those be?

    1. Teiwaz Silver badge

      Re: Well, at least the cops are deploying facial recognition sparingly...

      How hard can either of those be?

      - Anything you don't want to do is hard.

      Obviously a simple data retention policy is to keep everything indefinitely (maybe they've been watching too much Buffy, and are expecting vampires or maybe just the local loony chief constable has).

      1. moiety

        Re: Well, at least the cops are deploying facial recognition sparingly...

        Objection! You can't watch too much Buffy.

  23. Jack of Shadows Silver badge

    Anything you don't want to do is hard.

    The NSA is a formidable force in this regard, going so far as being unable to search and retrieve emails by subject or content.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Chelsea Flower Show or the Nottinghill Carnival?

    Chelsea Flower Show or the Nottinghill Carnival?

    (Decisions, Decisions)

    I'm sure Theresa May and Met Police discussed long and hard, with impartially about trailing Facial Recognition Technology at one of two public venues/events.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Chelsea Flower Show or the Nottinghill Carnival?

      "Chelsea Flower Show or the Nottinghill Carnival?"

      Well, next time you want to commit a crime it's pretty obvious where you should be headed....

  25. D Moss Esq

    I should get out more

    "This is is only the second time that British cops have openly trialled live automated facial recognition (AFR) systems in the UK ... Last year, Leicestershire Police also trialled AFR at Download Festival ..."

    No.

    New Scientist, 7 September 2002:

    Airport security isn't the only use for face-recognition software: it has been put through its paces in other settings, too. One example is "face in the crowd" on-street surveillance, made notorious by a trial in the London Borough of Newham. Since 1998, some of the borough's CCTV cameras have been feeding images to a face-recognition system supplied by Visionics, and Newham has been cited by the company as a success and a vision of the future of policing. But in June this year, the police admitted to The Guardian newspaper that the Newham system had never even matched the face of a person on the street to a photo in its database of known offenders, let alone led to an arrest.

    Worrying about this technology working only encourages the police to spend our money on it. Better to laugh at them for falling for the salesmen's patter.

  26. Slx

    Everyone will just have to add Theresa on Facebook and Twitter by law.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Well, duh..

    According to a Freedom of Information request made by pressure group Liberty last year, however, in the three years since the ruling the Met confessed it had only deleted 560 persons’ images because “the current I.T. system which holds MPS custody images was not designed or built to accommodate a complex retention policy.”

    Well, that's an easy one. As that system is clearly not developed to comply with clearly stated legal objectives that were bloody well known at the time it was designed it seems that said system is not cleared to operate and must be switched off, with data to be disposed in a controlled and audited manner. Don't see the problem myself, really.

    What? Ah yes, who is going to make them?

  28. Fred Flintstone Gold badge

    Have a look at this then..

    At the end of September is the Security exhibition in Germany's Essen, and apart from exhibitionists you can find dodgy stuff like a camera that auto-tracks faces. No idea what it does with multiple faces, but that's what facial recognition is for if you can couple it to multiple feeds.

    This *needs* regulation, but done by people that have a clue, which by default excludes the people who currently make it.

  29. Matt Bryant Silver badge

    Ahem!

    This shows why the Police are always looking for even more ways to catch those criminals that try to take advantage of the Carnival crowds.

    1. Roj Blake Silver badge

      Re: Ahem!

      440 arrests and a couple of stabbings out of a crowd at least hundreds of thousands strong is small change.

      How many arrests do the Met make on a typical drunken friday night?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Ahem!

        How many arrests do the Met make on a typical drunken friday night?

        I presume drunken Met officers will have a problem counting, so nobody knows.

        :)

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