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A teen in New York could be $1 billion richer if everything goes his way in a court case against Apple in which he alleges their facial recognition software led to his wrongful arrest for a series of thefts in Apple stores that were perpetrated by someone else.
Allegedly, Apple’s facial recognition software “filled in the details” when it came to what Ousmane Bah looked like even though all it had on him was the information on his ID.
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His personal information was stolen and the thief used his personal details to commit a string of thefts at Apple stores up and down the east coast of the United States.
Apparently, the thief’s picture that was associated with Bah’s details didn’t even look like Bah, something noted by a detective who later followed up on the case.
That didn’t stop Bah from getting arrested, however, and that seems to be the crux of the conflict here. Bah is alleging that Apple simply used his details without reference to the thief’s picture, or something along those lines, and had him arrested based upon nothing more than matching ID details, not because he looked like the guy that robbed Apple blind.
As the New York Post summarizes, “Bah believes Apple took the perp at his word, and then programmed its security systems to recognize the man’s face as Bah’s.”
The lawsuit alleges that “use of facial recognition software in its stores to track individuals suspected of theft is the type of Orwellian surveillance that consumers fear, particularly as it can be assumed that the majority of consumers are not aware that their faces are secretly being analyzed.”
In response to Engadget, Apple told the website that the company does not use facial recognition in its stores.
With that, who knows where the lawsuit will go in court.