A Serbian government agency has not yet ruled out the deployment of facial recognition software that the country’s data protection authority says violates the country’s laws, according to BalkanInsight.

The Serbian Interior Ministry reportedly sought to procure Griffeye Analyze DI Pro last year, with plans to deploy it immediately. A purchase, however, has not yet been made.

The same software is also used by Europol, and the Sweden-based biometrics provider’s software is used by the US government for child exploitation and sexual assault investigations.

Personal data protection commissioner Milan Marinovic, however, said the ministry was likely to go ahead with the procurement. “No policeman in the world would give up such things because it suits them,” he told the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network (BIRN).

He doesn’t believe deploying it would be legal.

“We’re talking about a global threat that I don’t like. The software can also physically track you,” the commissioner said. “In Serbia, we have no right to such a sophisticated type of processing of citizens’ data.”

The article notes that in 2020, a bill that would have served as the basis for extensive biometric video surveillance was withdrawn. Griffeye Analyze DI Pro, according to the company’s website, is a “single user” investigation system, rather than software for surveillance camera networks.

However, he searches the internet for digital information on topics, according to the report, which cites a Serbian civil society advocate’s concern over the amount of information he provides.

The lack of a legal basis may not have stopped the deployment of biometric public surveillance in Serbia, as more than 8,000 Huawei cameras are expected to be deployed in the capital, Belgrade.

Article topics

biometric identification | biometrics | criminal identification | data protection | facial recognition | forensic medicine | claweye | legislation | Serbia