Germany tests facial recognition technology at rail station

Transportation Associated Press

People walk inside the Deutsche Bahn main train station "Hauptbahnhof" in Mainz, Germany, June 2, 2017. (REUTERS/Ralph Orlowski )

German authorities have launched a six-month test of automatic facial recognition technology at a Berlin railway station, which the country’s top security official says could be used to improve security in the future.

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More than 200 people volunteered to have their names and two photos stored for the project at Suedkreuz station, where three cameras film an entrance and an escalator.


Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere said in a statement Tuesday “technical progress must not stop at our security services.”

But Germans generally back strong data protection. Ulrich Schellenberg, head of the German Bar Association, said “not everything that is technically possible is something we want to do as a society.”

It’s not clear how officials will proceed after the test.

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