Facial recognition technology is being used in warfare for the first time. It could be a game changer in Ukraine, where it is being used to identify the dead and reunite families. But if we fail to grapple with the ethics of this technology now, we could find ourselves in a human rights minefield.
Ukraine’s Ministry of Defence has been using Clearview AI facial recognition software since March 2022 to build a case for war crimes and identify the dead – both Russian and Ukrainian. The Ministry of Digital Transformation in Ukraine said it is using Clearview AI technology to give Russians the chance to experience the “true cost of the war”, and to let families know that if they want to find their loved ones’ bodies, they are “welcome to come to Ukraine”.
Ukraine is being given free access to the software. It’s also being used at checkpoints and could help reunite refugees with their families.