Report on AI use by U.S. government cites biometrics as example of need for internal expertise

The U.S. government must improve its internal AI expertise and capacity to properly leverage the transformative power of biometrics and other technologies, according to a report from experts at Stanford and New York University. The report is meant to guide future government decisions, but along the way reveals some details about the development of a major biometric program. The use of face biometrics instead of iris recognition for border checks by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) was decided on due to low iris capture rates and because facial images are easier to come by. An internal report cited in “Government by Algorithm: Artificial Intelligence in Federal Administrative Agencies” shows CBP officials were unable to explain the failure rates produced by the technology, due to its proprietary nature.

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