…it protects our ability to move freely

You have the right to leave or move within your own country and you should be able to return.

Case Study

The increasing deployment of highly intrusive technologies in public and private spaces such as facial recognition technologies (FRT) threaten to impair our freedom of movement. These systems track and monitor millions of people without any regulation or oversight.

Tens of thousands of people pass through the Kings Cross Estate in London every day. Since 2015, Argent - the group that runs the Kings Cross Estate - were using FRT to track all of those people.

Police authorities rushed in secret to plug in to this private surveillance network. Among others, in 2016, Camden police agreed with Argent to supply images of individuals who had been “arrested and charged, cautioned or reprimanded or given a formal warning” to King’s Cross between May 2016 and March 2018. These criteria are obscenely over broad - cautions, for example, “are given to anyone aged 10 or over for minor crimes - for example writing graffiti on a bus shelter”. This kind of outsourcing of surveillance by the police is highly problematic.

We are seeing such invasive technologies being deployed across the world such as Brazil and Argentina.

The deployment of facial recognition technology could severely impair the right to freedom of movement especially as the technology continues to further develop. Facial recognition technology represents a particularly intrusive form of biometric surveillance, because it can be used remotely, without the knowledge of the public. Facial recognition technology uses software that reads the distinct and specific features of a person’s face in order to create a detailed biometric map. Being captured by a facial recognition camera is like being fingerprinted without us knowing about it.

We cannot move freely if we are constantly monitored and tracked. Freedom of movement in its essence entails freedom from unjustified surveillance.

(1) Everyone has the right to freedom of movement and residence within the borders of each state. (2) Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to return to his country. Article 13, Freedom of movement