Argentina is using facial recognition system that tracks child suspects, Human Rights Watch says

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Publishing such information violates the Convention of the Rights of the Child, a U.N. agreement to which Argentina is a signatory, that says a child’s privacy should be respected at all stages of legal proceedings, said Hye Jung Han, a researcher and advocate in the children’s rights division at Human Rights Watch, who was the lead researcher on the report.

Argentina’s embassy in Washington did not respond immediately to a request for comment.

On a visit to Argentina in May 2019, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the right to privacy warned the Argentine government that CONARC’s database contained 61 children. By that October Argentina’s justice ministry said there was no children’s data in CONARC. But the report contends the practice continued after the U.N. visit, with 25 additional children added to the database.

An HRW review of CONARC also saw that the public information about the children was peppered with inaccuracies.

“Some children appear multiple times,” José Miguel Vivanco, director of Human Rights Watch’s Americas division, wrote Friday in a public letter of concern to Argentine President Alberto Fernández. “There are blatant typographical errors, conflicting details, and multiple national ID numbers assigned to single individuals, raising the risk of mistaken matches. In one example, a 3-year-old is listed as being wanted for aggravated robbery.”

He added that the practice of using this information for facial recognition tracking also poses huge accuracy risks, given the higher rate of misidentification of children with such technology.

“Facial recognition technology has considerably higher error rates for children, in part because most algorithms have been trained, tested and tuned only on adult faces,” Vivanco wrote. “In addition, since children experience rapid and drastic changes in their facial features as they age, facial recognition algorithms also often fail to identify a child who is a

Domestic terrorism suspects who plotted to kidnap Gov. Whitmer shared plans in Facebook groups

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According to details from a shocking new affidavit, the FBI uncovered a group planning “violent action against multiple state governments,” including a detailed plot to capture or kill Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer. The domestic terror group organized across Facebook groups, in-person events and at least two encrypted chat apps that the FBI did not name.

Whitmer, a Democrat, became a major target of pervasive anti-lockdown sentiment on the political right earlier this year when states imposed restrictions to slow the spread of the coronavirus. According to the affidavit, at a June in-person meeting, members of the group “talked about murdering ‘tyrants’ or ‘taking’ a sitting governor.”

Facebook says it played a “proactive” role in the FBI investigation, first reaching out to law enforcement six months ago. The FBI said it became aware of the activity through social media and also relied on an informant to collect information from within the group.

“We remove content, disable accounts and immediately report to law enforcement when there is a credible threat of imminent harm to people or public safety,” a Facebook spokesperson told TechCrunch. “We proactively reached out and cooperated with the FBI early in this ongoing investigation.”

The group sought to grow its numbers, contacting a Michigan-based militia group known as the Wolverine Watchmen that shared overlapping interests. Facebook removed the Wolverine Watchmen group from its platform in June when it purged a number of groups connected to the anti-government boogaloo movement.

“Today we are designating a violent US-based anti-government network as a dangerous organization and banning it from our platform,” Facebook wrote at the time, drawing a distinction between violent boogaloo groups and the “loosely-affiliated” boogaloo movement.

TechCrunch asked Facebook if the individuals connected with the Michigan militia through Facebook groups but the company did not provide an answer to that