FBI Demands SkyNet, Uh, Server in the Sky

The FBI supports Server in the Sky, an international database of biometric data accessible by law enforcement officials in countries allied in the "war on terror."

Although the database would be used to hunt criminals and terrorists, it would contain biometric information like iris scans, finger prints and facial images about ordinary citizens whose names have come up in criminal investigations. The FBI told the Guardian (a UK news organization):

"Server in the Sky is an FBI initiative designed to foster the advanced search and exchange of biometric information on a global scale. While it is currently in the concept and design stages, once complete it will provide a technical forum for member nations to submit biometric search requests to other nations. It will maintain a core holding of the world's 'worst of the worst' individuals. Any identifications of these people will be sent as a priority message to the requesting nation."

Although the FBI proposes to establish three categories of suspects, the lowest category includes "subjects of terrorist investigations." Don't forget that warrantless wiretapping projects target vast networks of innocent civilians as well as the few real suspects in an investigation.

The FBI hopes to have a pilot project up and running by the middle of this year.

As for the science fiction link to this story, this seems like as good a start for Skynet - a kind of server in the sky - as I can think of. Skynet is, of course, the entirely fictional global defense system that eventually turns on its creators in the Terminator movies.

If your paranoiac streak is not fully satisfied by this story, see also DNA Fingerprint Database For Workers Gattaca-Style Proposed and 'Precrime' Database For London Homicide Prevention Unit.

Via FBI wants instant access to British identity data.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 1/15/2008)

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Index of related articles:

Biometric security overview
Biometrics Glossary
Characteristics of successful biometric identification methods
Biometric identification systems
Biometric technology on the leading edge
Biometric identification - advantages
Biometric security and business ethics
Biometric authentication: what method works best?
Iris Recognition
Iris Scan

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