New Jersey Gov.
Chris Christie said he was glad the state was embracing facial recognition software.
“I think it’s a positive step,” he told reporters in his first public comments about the program, which will be implemented next year.
He said facial recognition technology is a valuable tool for law enforcement and for the state to fight crime.
“It’s the first time that we’ve seen a state embrace this type of technology,” Mr. Christie said.
The new facial recognition program will use biometric data from the driver’s license to determine a person’s gender, height and eye color.
The data is stored on a computer, which is connected to a facial recognition database.
New Jersey has one of the highest rates of facial recognition usage in the country, according to the Washington Post.
But privacy advocates worry about what could happen if the data can be used to identify people, even when there is no clear evidence of criminal activity.
“That’s a concern,” said Sarah Jones, director of the National Institute of Justice’s Center on Privacy and Technology.
“How can we use facial recognition to identify individuals without evidence that they’ve committed a crime?”
New Jersey already has some of the strictest facial recognition laws in the nation, which require drivers to wear a helmet and keep their license plates in plain sight at all times.
Mr. Walker’s proposal would make the state’s law more stringent, requiring license plates to be hidden or prominently displayed.
A state law passed last year also requires license plates be displayed on a dashboard or in a window when a vehicle is on a public street.
In New Jersey, there is currently no law requiring a driver to wear an eye or facial recognition system.
Mr: Christie, a Republican, said the system would be useful for law-enforcement, but he didn’t say whether that was an incentive to use it.
“What I think the governor has done is really done a lot of work on this,” said Mr. Jones, of the New Jersey Institute of Technology.
In the days leading up to the inauguration, New Jersey police have been looking for anyone who might have a criminal record in the state.
On Friday, Mr. Trump tweeted a photo of a person with a red “H” tattoo and asked Mr. Biden, a Democrat, to “please pardon this criminal.”
“This was not a random, random act,” said Ms. Jones.
“This is a targeted effort to identify the most likely suspects, to try to identify those people who might be able to commit a crime, based on facial recognition data.”