Details of a new FBI program to collect iris scans reveals how state and local police are assisting the federal law enforcement agency to spread the dragnet of national government surveillance wider and wider.
As part of its “pilot program” — which was floated by the FBI as a simple test of technology — the bureau has quietly collected over 434,000 iris scans since the program started three years ago.
The worst part of the story: Most of the scans are being sent to the Feds from state and local police departments. Here’s one example of the unconstitutional collusion as published by The Verge:
As a modestly sized department — policing 2 million citizens with just over 1,800 sworn officers — the San Bernardino Sheriff’s Department doesn’t seem like it would be on the cutting edge of surveillance technology. But the department has quietly become one of the most productive nodes in a nationwide iris-scanning project, collecting iris data from at least 200,000 arrestees over the last two and a half years, according to documents obtained by The Verge. In the early months of 2016, the department was collecting an average of 189 iris scans each day.