Home Technology Visa candidates face AI monitoring of social media by U.S. ICE

Visa candidates face AI monitoring of social media by U.S. ICE

Visa candidates face AI monitoring of social media by U.S. ICE


The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) company has been utilizing an AI-powered device known as Big Oak Search Know-how (GOST) to scan visa candidates’ social media posts since 2014, in response to paperwork obtained by means of a Freedom of Data Act motion.

In line with an Oct. 27 TechSpot report, the system offers candidates a “social media rating” from 1-100 primarily based on whether or not their posts are deemed “derogatory” in the direction of america. ICE analysts can then evaluate flagged photos and profiles to find out if candidates are a threat.

ICE has paid Big Oak over $10 million since 2017 for the expertise, which additionally has contracts with the DEA, Air Power, State Division, and Treasury Division. Privateness advocates argue such a AI screening raises important civil liberties points.

Ought to the federal government use algorithms to look social media to find out who’s “dangerous?”

“The federal government shouldn’t be utilizing algorithms to scrutinize our social media posts and determine which of us is ‘dangerous,’” mentioned Patrick Toomey deputy director of the ACLU’s nationwide safety mission. “DHS wants to elucidate to the general public how its methods decide whether or not somebody is a threat or not, and what occurs to the individuals whose on-line posts are flagged by its algorithms.”

The social media surveillance program began as a 2016 pilot concentrating on potential visa overstayers. That very same 12 months, the Trump administration carried out guidelines requiring visa candidates to supply 5 years of social media historical past.

Consultants warn these practices might result in discrimination, with candidates from sure nations or backgrounds extra more likely to be flagged by automated methods. In 2019, a Harvard scholar was denied entry to the U.S. due to associates’ social media exercise.

In line with the information, ICE’s contract with Big Oak led to 2022. Nonetheless, the observe of utilizing AI to evaluate candidates’ social media raises questions on privateness, accountability, and equity in immigration enforcement. Extra oversight is required to stop abuse and shield civil liberties.

Featured Picture Credit score: Photograph by Karolina Grabowska; Pexels; Thanks!

Radek Zielinski

Radek Zielinski is an skilled expertise and monetary journalist with a ardour for cybersecurity and futurology.



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here