In a letter to Ton-That, Markey asked Clearview to name the government agencies it claims to be communicating with and to disclose any agreements it may have reached with them. He also asked if Clearview is planning to use real-time facial recognition to power its contact tracing tool. BuzzFeed News previously reported that Clearview had developed a sister company called Insight Camera that partnered with at least two organizations to do real-time facial recognition and surveillance. In response to a detailed list of questions, Ton-That told BuzzFeed News: “We just received the letter from Senator Markey, for whom we have great respect. We will be responding to him directly.” Asked by BuzzFeed News, Ton-That did not comment on which state or federal authorities the company is working with. “Technology has an important role to play in mitigating the COVID-19 pandemic, but this health crisis cannot justify using unreliable surveillance tools that could undermine our privacy rights,” the letter reads. “Given that your responses to my previous letter failed to address ongoing concerns about your product — particularly around accuracy and bias testing — any plans to deploy it widely to fight the coronavirus could further increase Clearview’s threat to the public’s privacy.”
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