Surrey Police Get ‘Youth Language Training’

Work-mandated training courses are undeniably dull, but this one, that police officers in Surrey are being given, might just be more entertaining than most. Officers are being taught 'youth language' – words and phrases that are used by youngsters that seem pretty foreign to anyone not fully 'down with the kids'. Read More >>

Police Are Going to Start Testing Drivers’ Eyesight by the Side of the Road

If you get pulled over by the police, generally speaking they'll make sure the car you're driving is yours, that you have got a valid licence, and in some cases they'll test to make sure you're not too drunk to be legally driving. Now, though, they may be checking to see if your eyesight is good enough, because if it's not they'll be taking your driving licence off you. Read More >>

Police in Paraguay Discover Their Rifles Have Been Replaced With Toy Replicas

Last week, police officers in Paraguay found that at least 42 battle rifles had been stolen from their armoury and replaced with toy replicas. It’s unclear if a flag with the word “BANG!” written on it popped out of the barrels. Read More >>

Amazon Accidentally Makes Rock-Solid Case for Not Giving Its Face Recognition Tech to Police

Days after the ACLU released a damning report on Amazon’s face recognition product Rekognition, Amazon’s general manager of AI, Dr Matt Wood, countered its findings in a blog post. The ACLU used Rekognition to scan the faces of all 535 members of the US Congress, finding the software mistook 28 of them for suspected criminals. Dr Wood notes first that the ACLU doesn’t reveal its methodology or dataset in the report, then punctuates Amazon’s original response—that it encourages higher confidence thresholds for law enforcement. Read More >>

Who Will Police Police Drones?

The US Police Foundation doesn’t want the police to call drones “drones.” Because of the public’s association with “military-style weapons like the Predator,” the organisation’s 311-page report reads, the term “drone” is “a major obstacle to law enforcement’s ability to convince the public” that police drone programs “could actually increase public safety, not jeopardise it.” Read More >>

Home Office Reveals Plan for a Centralised Biometric Database That Sounds Like an Absolute Nightmare

The Home Office released a report this week announcing plans for a forthcoming centralised biometric database of its citizens, compiling DNA, fingerprint, face, and possibly even voice data for law enforcement to access and share, according to the Telegraph. In addition to helping local police solve crimes, the Home Office report also proposes using the centralised database for vetting migrants at borders and verifying visa applications. Pushback has been swift, as civil rights groups argue that face recognition is faulty, dubiously legal, and often collected without public consent. Read More >>

Poncho the Spanish Police Dog Goes Viral For Showing Off His CPR Skills

It’s rough out there for humans right now. But at least we have dogs to cheer us up. This police dog in Spain, a very good boy named Poncho, has gone viral after demonstrating his CPR skills. Read More >>

Bodycam Maker Axon Reportedly Tried to Buy Face Recognition Tech

American body camera manufacturer Axon requested a contract for face recognition software from an artificial intelligence startup, the Wall Street Journal reports, which stands to further fears from privacy advocates about the state of surveillance in America. Read More >>

Amazon Shareholders Call for Jeff Bezos to Stop Selling Facial Recognition to Police

On Friday, 20 groups of Amazon shareholders sent CEO Jeff Bezos a letter pressuring him to stop selling the company’s face recognition software to American law enforcement, CNN reports. Called Rekognition, the software came under greater scrutiny last month when the ACLU published revealing internal documents related to its use by police. Numerous civil rights organisations co-signed a letter demanding Amazon stop assisting government surveillance, and several members of the US Congress have expressed concerns about the partnerships. Read More >>

Google Translate Can’t Provide Consent for a Police Search, Judge Rules

Google Translate is a useful tool for some quick and easy translations, but a federal judge in Kansas, US ruled this week that the machine translation service isn’t good enough to allow a person to consent to a police search. Read More >>

iPhone Hackers May Already Have a Workaround for Police to Crack Apple’s Newest Security Feature

Apple and the law enforcement community have been stuck in a back-and-forth over encryption for the last few years, and it’s heated up considerably this month since Apple announced a feature that would thwart a popular iPhone cracking method used by police. Now, the companies that work with law enforcement have responded, and they’re pretty sure they already have a workaround. Read More >>

Police are Predictably Annoyed About Apple’s Plan to Turn Off USB Data Access on iPhones

Tech giant Apple is reportedly planning to prevent anyone who wants to gain access to a encrypted iOS device via techniques like Cellebrite’s GrayKey phone-hacking box by introducing an option to lock USB data access an hour after it’s locked, essentially turning iPhones, iPads, and iPods into sealed black boxes. Officials in the law enforcement community, which has been scaremongering about Apple’s encryption technology for years over the objections of actual tech experts, aren’t happy about it. Read More >>

Soap Shop Abandons Bizarre Political Window Displays

Soap shop Lush, that place on the high street that smells of lemons and old women when you walk past it, has decided to stop running its extremely off-message window displays about undercover police corruption. It's retreating back to its core messaging that smelling of lavender is good and here's where to come if present shopping for grandma. Read More >>

Police Are More Likely to Arrest You at a Protest Where People Actually Give a Damn, Study Finds

A new study from the University of Southern California (USC) suggests that there is a correlation between an increase in violence at protests and tweets with “moral content” concerning what the protest is about—like, say, police violence. But dig a bit deeper, and you’ll find that the study’s implications are more complicated than that. Read More >>

Met Police’s Drill Music Squad Gets Hundreds of Videos Pulled From YouTube

A bunch of confused old men working at the Met Police have succeeded in getting some apparently offensive content removed from YouTube, as efforts to blame the drill music trend for London's current spate of violent crime continues. Read More >>