Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge
The state of Maine now has the most stringent laws regulating government use of facial recognition in the country.
The new law prohibits government use of facial recognition except in specifically outlined situations, with the most broad exception being if police have probable cause that an unidentified person in an image committed a serious crime, or for proactive fraud prevention.
Since Maine police will not have access to facial recognition, they will be able to ask the FBI and Maine Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) to run these searches.
Crucially, the law plugs loopholes that police have used in the past to gain access to the technology, like informally asking other agencies or third parties to run backchannel searches for them. Logs…