UN warns law enforcement against using 'big data' to discriminate

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Police and border guards must combat racial profiling and ensure that their use of "big data" collected via artificial intelligence does not reinforce biases against minorities, United Nations experts said on Thursday. Companies that sell algorithmic profiling systems to public entities and private companies, often used in screening job applicants, must be regulated to prevent misuse of personal data that perpetuates prejudices, they said. "It's a rapidly developing technological means used by law enforcement to determine, using big data, who is likely to do what. And that's the danger of it," Verene Shepherd, a member of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, told Reuters. "We've heard about companies using these algorithmic methods to discriminate on the basis of skin colour," she added, speaking from Jamaica.

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