Moscow City Police facial recognition data sales

Occurred: December 2019

Moscow police have been selling citizens' facial data and access to live streams of the city's CCTV facial recognition surveillance network, according to an investigation by MBKh Media. 

Journalist Andrey Kaganskikh discovered sellers on forums trading in personal data and providing facial recognition look-up services. He also found officers from the Moscow City Police and government bureaucrats selling custom URLs and their personal access credentials to the city's Integrated Center for Data Processing and Storage (YTKD), with the latter providing unlimited access to whole network for 30,000 rubles (USD 470).

At the time, Moscow was estimated to have over 175,000 CCTV cameras, of which roughly 3,000 were equipped with facial recognition technology. Moscow had introduced facial biometrics to its CCTV system in 2017.

Operator: Moscow City Police
Developer: NtechLabs

Country: Russia

Sector: Govt - transport; Govt - municipal

Purpose: Strengthen security

Technology: Facial recognition; Computer vision; Machine learning
Issue: Privacy; Security; Dual/multi-use

Transparency: Governance

Investigations, assessments, audits 🧐