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UK Considers Monitoring Migrants With Convictions Via SmartWatches

Migrants in the UK convicted of a criminal offense will soon be required to scan their faces multiple times a day with smartwatches installed with facial recognition technology according to plans from the Home Office and the Ministry of Justice, The Guardian reports. The Home Office says the scheme will involve “daily monitoring of individuals subject to immigration control,” with the requirement to wear either a fitted ankle tag or a smartwatch at all times.

There is no mention of risk assessments to determine whether it is appropriate to monitor vulnerable or at-risk asylum seekers. Critics say 24-hour surveillance of asylum seekers breaches human rights and may have a detrimental impact on migrants’ health and wellbeing. The scheme is due to be introduced in the fall across the UK, at an initial cost of £6m ($7.2m).

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