Social Media Now Being Used By Police And Intelligence Agencies To Collect Biometrics

Authored by Nicholas West via,

Amid the ongoing Facebook/Cambridge Analytica debacle over their general surveillance and misuse of users’ private data, there is an emerging trend that is infinitely more disturbing.

The first story popped up in the UK yesterday where police admitted to using a photo sent through WhatsApp to cull fingerprints for evidence that successfully led to the conviction of 11 individuals for drug crimes.

The story further revealed that this was not just a special-use case; apparently it is a technique that has been developed specifically to use the vast amount of public photos available to extract evidence from images that have been posted or transmitted online.

As reported by Dawn Luger for The Daily Sheeple, this new technique is being rolled out and law enforcement is calling it “groundbreaking,” as it can pull information from even partial photos:

It all started with a drug bust. The bust resulted in the police getting hold of a phone that had a WhatsApp message and image of ecstasy pills in a person’s palm. The message read: “For sale – Skype and Ikea-branded ecstasy pills…are you interested?”

The phone was sent to South Wales Police where the photo showing the middle and bottom portion of a pinky was enhanced.


“Despite being provided with only a very small section of the fingerprint which was visible in the photograph, the team were able to successfully identify the individual,” said Dave Thomas, forensic operations manager at the Scientific Support Unit.

No specifics were actually given by the police department about this “pioneering fingerprint technique,” but it is quite clear that this is a tool they are ready and willing to use.

Meanwhile, intrusions from Facebook are compounding in the wake of a massive lawsuit sparked by revelations that Facebook appears to be using facial recognition information for much more than just tagging people in your private social circle. The multi-billion dollar lawsuit was just given the go-ahead by an Illinois judge and illustrates the scope of what Facebook retains about people, how they are willing to distribute it, and the lack of safeguards against outside violations:

The class of users approved by Donato dates back to June 2011, when Facebook had an Illinois user base of more than 6 million people, according to lawyers for the plaintiffs. “Although many individuals may not have had enough tagged photos to generate a face template in Facebook’s database, in January 2011 (i.e., before Facebook implemented tag suggestions for all users) the average user was tagged in 53 photos, far more than the 10 needed to generate a face template,” according to a December court filing.

Privacy advocates have said the billions of images Facebook is thought to be collecting could be even more valuable to identity thieves than the names, addresses, and credit card numbers now targeted by hackers. While those types of information are mutable — even Social Security numbers can be changed — biometric data for retinas, fingerprints, hands, face geometry and blood samples are unique identifiers.


And yet, it’s not only hackers and social media companies that have found this data to be irresistible. According to a new report in Forbes, former military intelligence operatives are also creating their own databases from publicly available biometric information.

Forbes identified an Israeli company named Verint that is comprised of ex-spies who have created a service called Face-Int based off of harvested online biometrics. Moreover, their data collection system is one that almost assuredly will spread (if it hasn’t already) as they “have long been vendors for the U.S. government, providing bleeding-edge spy tech to the NSA, the U.S. Navy and countless other intelligence and security agencies.”

Of course, the stated focus of the company’s activities are to pursue terrorists - the catch-all justification to introduce new surveillance technologies that just so happen to inevitably trickle down to mundane law enforcement sooner rather than later, as the UK case above clearly illustrates. Credit should be given to Forbes for acknowledging the reality behind this propaganda, as their article states (emphasis added):

Though Terrogence (now Verint – Ed.) is primarily focused on helping intelligence agencies and law enforcement fight terrorism online, LinkedIn profiles of current and former employees indicate it’s also involved in other, more political endeavours. 

One ex-staffer, in describing her role as a Terrogence analyst, said she’d “conducted public perception management operations on behalf of foreign and domestic governmental clients,” and used “open source intelligence practices and social media engineering methods to investigate political and social groups.” She was not reachable at the time of publication.

Naturally, since none of the issues surrounding the use of our private online data for law enforcement applications was ever fully disclosed prior to rollout, we are now saddled with a pervasive real-time surveillance apparatus that harvests our information without consent. Moreover, this public-private info-grid is rapidly evolving as courts scramble to define exactly what the violations are and if the individual retains any right to privacy and constitutional protections in the Digital Age.  We are clearly picking up steam down the slippery slope as we are being converted from human beings into digital algorithms where our entire existence is just one click away.


Umh LetThemEatRand Wed, 04/18/2018 - 23:09 Permalink

Yes, even here. We may not use our real names, but this is social media and is certainly tracked. I have accepted the fact that TBTB can track my usage of the Internet I try to make it difficult for others. Years ago I determined that the NSA/CIA/... can read my mail before I do, I still shred my mail. There is still no advantage in telling the world that I am on vacation and away from home.

In reply to by LetThemEatRand

Umh Zero-risk bias Thu, 04/19/2018 - 10:03 Permalink

Political correctness to the moon.
"Sophie Kleber, Harvard Business Review, while not addressing this patent, brought out an interesting perspective.

"Algorithms don't have a conscience; they repeat what they learn. When algorithms repeat and perpetuate bias or opinion, we need to consider mathwashing.""

In reply to by Zero-risk bias

pigpen Oldwood Wed, 04/18/2018 - 23:06 Permalink

Oldwood, I guess the mouth breather enjoy surveillance, tracking and lack of privacy.

Oh well. My daily public service message for citizens to download mobile adblocker and destroy the digtal advertising value and tracking incentive.

I prefer brave browser as brave blocks advertising malware and tracking by DEFAULT on any device and operating system rendering digital advertising model useless.

Whoever controls the browser controls the digital advertising money.

Brave is funded by Peter Thiel and run by old CEO of Firefox.

We can take down the goobook and protect your data with brave or equivalent mobile adblocker.



In reply to by Oldwood

Twatter Wed, 04/18/2018 - 22:35 Permalink

We are clearly picking up steam down the slippery slope as we are being converted from human beings into digital algorithms where our entire existence is just one click away.

Sir, Do You have a mouse in Your pocket? Count Me out of Your Orwellian nightmare. I have no shame in My game and live off grid.

SixIsNinE Twatter Thu, 04/19/2018 - 06:31 Permalink

down the slippery slope.

which is why my theme in educating the DEA/NSA about the necessity of ending the drug war - because it is the root that enslaves everyone - including the slave minds IN the DEA/NSA.

to be the jailer you have to imprison yourself.

which is WHY the very medicine mentioned in this article is the KEY itself!

MDMA - ECSTASY - is the #1 medicine to return humanity to freedom.

pure MDMA is a total MIRACLE.

i gave my life to teach the DEA this. 

and have been subject to all INVASIVE including physical surveillance harassment techniques they could muster (DEA) and because of my basis for existence -

LOVE = i have survived to write this today.

i have used all their tools and entrapments to shine the light of truth and love in their face.

finally last year DEA gave MDMA breakthrough status to treat PTSD.

make it legal and we wouldn't have stupid wars that create PTSD.


In reply to by Twatter

Kagemusho Wed, 04/18/2018 - 23:15 Permalink

This will make it tough for ANTIFA types to get jobs when the Soros money finally dries up.  Been a bad boy in a violent demonstration? You think you were anonymous covering your face while you were trashing shit but had enough of your face showing for an algorithm to reconstruct the rest of what you look like?

How long before hiring managers have access to that tech? How long before it can scan billions of images in in a wide-ranging database in microseconds? How long until it is used to screen potential job applicants for insure no 'troublemakers' get hired? My guess is not long.

Dude-dude Wed, 04/18/2018 - 23:19 Permalink

I read the title and didn't go farther...  Seriously? 'Now'??? Wow. Totally behind. Try 'has been happening for at least ten to fifteen years now.'

All social media sites, all video-games, all video calls (Skype, Facetime, WhatsApp, etc.), everything. 

And not counting all the business and personal websites.  Did your buddy's at work post a picture of you? Employer required a web pic?  boom. If you've got a picture on the web, then your facial & body bio-metrics (including retina, finger prints (yes finger prints - why do you think there is such a drive to get that 4K quality on cell phone cams?) Ever waved your hand(s) while being photographed for a Fucbook post?)...  

Maybe next year the author will discover that peoples' voices are being stored and printed...  Uhh, yep that too for at least the past 10 years or so.

Dudes - this is so old-news to everyone in the know.

mc888 Dude-dude Thu, 04/19/2018 - 01:01 Permalink

Surveillance State articles seem to be flavor of the week. No coincidence since these companies are back under purview of the FTC thanks to repeal of the misleadingly named "Net Neutrality"; and are no longer exempt from Consumer Privacy and Antitrust laws.

Yet not one of these authors manages to put 2 and 2 together, and wheel out the old skeleton in the closet known as Obamacare.

HIPAA and ACA, with the Federal Data Services Hub, have done more dangerous surveillance and started much earlier than the current crop of "app jockeys".……

and a link for the lefties, because well, you're fucked too.

According to a recent report from the Identity Theft Resource Center, most identity theft in the United States is medical-related.…


In reply to by Dude-dude

SixIsNinE mc888 Thu, 04/19/2018 - 06:39 Permalink

yeah - zerohedge covered that about OzeroCare back then - don't know if it got any play elsewhere, but probably buried mostly -

key part that I remember : anyone signing up, ALL that one revealed about their selves and health was immediately up for sale and distribution. 

huge data mining operation and all the Cunton Oblammo Bush cronies made bank.

this human machine is farming us - and the faster one gets out of the way of the combine traktor coming for us all the better. 

repeat mantra of the zerolounge:

ON a Long enough TimELine the SuRViVal Rate for EveryONE DROPS TO ZERO


In reply to by mc888

Adahy I am Groot Thu, 04/19/2018 - 05:51 Permalink

Best decision I've ever made.  I only come into town to work security for extra money, and check in on you bitchez.  Might not even have to do that as often if it's a good growing season this year.  We do keep our old-ass $10 burner phone for emergencies, but that's it; never owned a 'smart' device of any kind and never intend to.

In reply to by I am Groot

SixIsNinE Adahy Thu, 04/19/2018 - 06:53 Permalink

regarding "phones" -   pageplus offers a year for 80 fiatskis.

way more than i need - only had to pay up 30 fiatskis for the ENTIRE year.  it rolls over.  that's txt and calls.    phones that not long ago were top of the line are available for a few bucks and offer huge storage and cam/video capabilities -  -

moral of the story: under 3 bucks a month for full txt/call smartphone functionality.

(and so-called "burners" leave fingerprints too  no not literally - digitally - so the practicality of that option is no longer in practice, imho - may as well have a nice one - LG G3 is awesome - but that won't get the value of the pageplus deal above - its 4g - that deal requires 3g - iphone 4s will work for that deal. - which is cheaper than any burner that i've seen (iphone 4s with 32gb and case - ebay 30 fiatskis !)

and bluetooth is awesome.  

recs for amazing speakers : sony srs series - 55 or 77 - you can get a 55 on ebay for 60 bucks.  incredible sound and bass in a tiny package.  no reason to be without your favorite music all the time.

i left the srs-x77 on my chest for a while one night just to FEEL the ridiculous BASS (HUGE)  for kicks - and i swear my heart was in pain for a couple weeks from the workout (non-sync bassnotes on heartbeat) - learned a lesson on that one:)


In reply to by Adahy

DipshitMiddleC… Wed, 04/18/2018 - 23:31 Permalink

this is why snapchat went public.


when you use filters on snapchat pictures it takes a 3D pic of your face/head for an even more indepth picture of you.



what this means is that ZOG will know where you are, every second of the day once you're in public.

SixIsNinE CatInTheHat Thu, 04/19/2018 - 07:13 Permalink

some have called the persons debt money monopolists psychopaths, or something like that.

the problem is that the psychopathy is spreading rapidly.  it's grown way more in the last  years since 911.    basically they psychopaths rigged the game so that it enables psychopathy to metastasize. 

one has to "love" the War Machine in order to pretend "sanity" in todays murica.  and don't dare talk  TALK about anything of substance when you're out and about...

muddy the waters.

look at Alex Jones - who now has to pretend to support the official sandy hoax version because law suits. the un-justice system has legalized fraud and murder and theft.

when one can no longer even give opinion on a something then we're reached a high point of Tarded censorship and backwards bad behavior. --  but that is of course the results of allowing 911 to be accepted as the fakeversion given.

the perps just look at it as a successful fraud. and the muppets are the fools to follow.

just goes to show how astonishingly easily the human mindset can be conditioned to be hypnotized.   the fake-ball model given by the jesuits is the even bigger example of such hypnotization.  thankfully that fraud has been exposed.


back to above reference "war machine" - which is the "theme" of Radical MaryWana's :) posts here -  he never explicity points out what could happen if his moniker reference was to be taken off the table of criminal living things (hemp cannabis) - which my theme:  end the tard drug war and allow the conscious enhancers and good nutrients  which will allow LOVE to reign and reward excellent behavior - rather than the past 100 years of criminalizing a person because NOT their behavior but the mere possession of a molecule  - could give the fakePower legit cause (fraud) to steal all your life and possessions.   quite the racket.

i've often wondered why Rad MJ doesn't attempt to advocate here for reform of the injustice system of the tyrannical CSA (controlled substances act)

now that the kaZars have apparently succeeded in taking control of all aspects of rule maybe some new wave of sanity will arrive ... time to repeal the CSA.


In reply to by CatInTheHat

Fox Mulder Thu, 04/19/2018 - 00:32 Permalink

The government has been collecting this data since the 50s as part of the small pox vaccination scheme. This in orde to ”ease identification of people after a possible nuclear armageddon”.

I think you know the real reason for it.


Obamanism666 Thu, 04/19/2018 - 02:55 Permalink

Also saw an NCIS episode where they used a high definition photo of a dead victims face to open their smart phone.

Soon there  will be no criminal detectives just social media analyst going through your data and tracking your phone to prove you where at the scene at that time and took a selfie with the victim.

ConnectingTheDots Thu, 04/19/2018 - 10:36 Permalink

All this invasion of freedom and privacy because someone wants to put a substance into their own body? Keep repeating "land of the free" until you believe it.

Thank you Nixon, Erlichman, and Haldeman for starting this "war on drugs". The damage that you have done to the Constitution, freedom, and privacy would be extremely hard to measure. And all of this for your own self-serving political interests.

Perhaps you are looking down and seeing your damage and how those "leaders" with small minds and dark souls such as your own, who followed you kept escalated attacks on freedom and privacy with the tools you provided until we are in the sad state that anyone can see.