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UK watchdog fines facial recognition firm £7.5m over image collection

The Guardian

The UK's data watchdog has fined a facial recognition company £7.5m for collecting images of people from social media platforms and the web to add to a global database. The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) also ordered US-based Clearview AI to delete the data of UK residents from its systems. Clearview AI has collected more than 20bn images of people's faces from Facebook, other social media companies and from scouring the web. John Edwards, the UK information commissioner, said Clearview's business model was unacceptable. "Clearview AI Inc has collected multiple images of people all over the world, including in the UK, from a variety of websites and social media platforms, creating a database with more than 20bn images," he said. "The company not only enables identification of those people, but effectively monitors their behaviour and offers it as a commercial service.


UK unveils £40m innovation fund for self-driving buses and vans

#artificialintelligence

You could soon see self-driving buses and delivery vans on UK roads as the government launches a £40m ($50m) competition to bring this technology to the market. The funding to kick-start commercial self-driving services, such as delivery vehicles and passenger shuttles, will help bring together companies and investors so that sustainable business models to be rolled out nationally and exported globally. The Commercialising Connected and Automated Mobility competition will provide grants to help roll out commercial use self-driving vehicles across the UK from 2025. Types of self-driving vehicles that could be deployed include delivery vans, passenger buses, shuttles and pods, as well as vehicles that move people and luggage at airports and containers at shipping ports. The competition aims to unlock a new industry that could be worth £42bn to the UK economy by 2035, potentially creating 38,000 new skilled jobs.


Welsh universities change lives with artificial intelligence and data science – FE News

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Welsh Government investment in universities collaborating in data science and artificial intelligence is changing lives and helping Wales become …


Google sued for using the NHS data of 1.6 million Britons 'without their knowledge or consent'

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Google is being sued over its use of confidential medical records belonging to 1.6 million individuals in the UK. The company's artificial intelligence arm, DeepMind, received the data in 2015 from the Royal Free NHS Trust in London for the purpose of testing a smartphone app called Streams. The claim is being brought by Andrew Prismall in a representative action in the High Court. It alleges that Google and DeepMind "obtained and used a substantial number of confidential medical records without patients' knowledge or consent". Why did Google get access to patient records?


UK's Royal Mail aims to open up to 50 drone routes for rural deliveries

Engadget

The UK's Royal Mail wants to set up as many as 50 drone routes over the next three years to make deliveries to remote communities. The plan, which requires approval from the Civil Aviation Authority, would see the service secure up to 200 of the autonomous devices from logistics drone company Windracers. The Royal Mail said the first communities to benefit would be the Isles of Scilly (off the coast of Cornwall in south-west England) and the Scottish islands of Shetland, Orkney and the Hebrides. Test flights started last year. In the most recent one, held in April, the service was able to use a UAV to deliver mail to Unst, Britain's most northerly inhabited island, from Tingwall Airport on Shetland's largest island.


Royal Mail is building 500 drones to carry mail to remote communities

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Royal Mail is building a fleet of 500 drones to carry mail to remote communities all over the UK, including the Isles of Scilly and the Hebrides. The postal service, which has already conducted successful trials over Scotland and Cornwall, will create more than 50 new postal drone routes over the next three years as part of a new partnership with London company Windracers. Drones, or UAVs (uncrewed aerial vehicles), can help reduce carbon emissions and improve the reliability of island mail services, Royal Mail claims. They offer an alternative to currently-used delivery methods that can be affected by bad weather – ferries, conventional aircraft and land-based deliveries. They can also take off from any flat surface (sand, grass or tarmac) providing it is long enough.


RIMA, the European robotics network for Inspection and Maintenance

Robohub

The Inspection and Maintenance (I&M) Industry represents a large economic activity spanning across multiple sectors such as energy, oil & gas, water supply, transport, civil engineering, and infrastructure. RIMA project aims at bringing together Digital Innovation Hubs and Facilitators operating under a common network that allow them to join forces and competences in promoting I&M robotics in Europe. The BIS Research projects' analysis of the Inspection and Maintenance Robot Industry forecasts that the I&M market will grow at a significant CAGR of 12.73% on the basis of value from 2020 to 2025. In 2019, Europe dominated the 40% of the global inspection and maintenance robot market (BIS322A, Mar 2020). Although the European Union hosts most of the I&M robotics offer – being France, Germany, and Spain (and U.K. until 2021 Brexit) the leading manufacturing countries, there is still a bottleneck connecting this offer to the market and high potential applications.


How To Spot A Deepfake - Liwaiwai

#artificialintelligence

Just when you thought modern life couldn't get any crazier, a video emerged during the run-up to the recent UK election, in which the Prime Minister Boris Johnson appeared to endorse his political opponent Jeremy Corbyn. "Appeared" is the important word here, because this was actually just one of the latest in a steady stream of deepfakes – video and audio clips in which artificial intelligence simulates real people doing unreal things. Of course, humans have been faking it for centuries. From tattoos and piercings to face paints and wigs, we love altering ourselves and indulging in a bit of make-believe. My own little secret for years was that I wore green-coloured contact lenses. I did need them for short-sightedness – the colour was purely a personal choice.


Insurtech and Artificial Intelligence

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This article is an extract from The Insurance and Reinsurance Law Review - Edition 10. The rapid development of converging technologies is bringing about fundamental changes to the insurance industry. In the long term, organisations that are slow to embrace these new technologies will struggle to compete and to retain their place in the market. In the insurance sector, the use of technology to innovate or disrupt is known as'insurtech'. This is an elastic term that takes in the use of new technologies by both start-ups and incumbent insurance companies to transform access to and analysis of data, build new products, drive customer engagement and squeeze inefficiencies from the current insurance model.


Former NHS AI leader joins US spy-tech firm Palantir

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US surveillance-tech supplier Palantir has hired a one-time director of AI for NHSX – the former UK health service digital agency. Indra Joshi quit her role at the end of March as NHSX and NHS Digital were merged into NHS England, a non-departmental government body. Her arrival at Palantir will raise concerns among NHS watchers and privacy campaigners. Palantir largely carries out information analysis and processing work for the defense and intelligence communities, often creating bespoke solutions such as digital-profiling tools for organisations like the CIA and ICE. The firm was founded by prominent Donald Trump financier and PayPal investor Peter Thiel.