A Bay Area tech company is looking to sell AI (Artificial Intelligence) surveillance software that can not only determine who you are but also track your friends.
Vintra, a San Jose-based company, can “with a few clickings” take any individual from a surveillance camera and trace him back to those with whom he has been most frequently. The software can locate people “likely associated” on a searchable calendar and take them to a surveillance camera.
According to The Times, AI-enabled appearance technology has been used in Communist China in the Orwellian “social Credit” digital report and control scheme. Vintra is the first company to market the technology in the West.
The U.S. government has already started to use it.
On its website, the firm boasts about relationships with the San Francisco 49ers as well as a Florida police force. According to government contracting data, Vintra’s services were paid for by the Internal Revenue Service and other police departments in the country.
Because of reasons, the IRS must know your friends. For creepy, authoritarian purposes.
In December, I wrote about how facial-recognition software forced a New Jersey woman to be removed from the Rockettes show at Radio City Music Hall. This was because she worked for a law company that was involved in a lawsuit against MSG Entertainment, the parent company of Radio City. Kelly Conlon was not involved in the ongoing suit.
MSG Entertainment could also send its guards to Conlon’s friends using Vintra’s software if they felt vengeful enough.
Vintra customers aren’t interested in talking about it publicly, which is quite interesting.
The Times contacted all entities doing business with Vintra and none of them acknowledged that they used the co-appearance function in Vintra’s software. Some did not rule it out.
Vintra is a weapon that I don’t know how far the IRS could go. Remember Lois Lerner’s tactics against Tea Party groups in the IRS before the 2012 election. Imagine if she could also pick and choose who to audit based on the information about your political friends.
It’s a brave, new world that we are entering and it’s not something I like.