AI-based software used by law enforcement to monitor social media threats

It was recently found out that a new artificial intelligence (AI) software was being used by law enforcement to monitor social media and identify potential criminals.

Indeed, police in Michigan and Massachusetts are currently leasing the software SocialNet and are allegedly using it to comb social data in Boston, Lawrence, Brockton, Worcester, New Bedford, and Springfield. The AI-based software is designed to help authorities find persons of interest and map out their networks during investigations. Another surveillance software, OIMonitor, that sends alerts in order to predict a crime before it occurs is also used.

The system is said to be only used with publicly available data and not to analyze private data obtained through other ways. Each license request is stated to be considered carefully.

However, civil-rights advocates and groups are pointing out the potential threats of the technology and how it can lead to a surveillance state targeting minorities.