Americans are being denied unemployment benefits during the coronavirus pandemic because of states relying upon a facial recognition company.
"People around the country are furious after being denied their unemployment benefits due to apparent problems with facial recognition technology that claims to prevent fraud," Vice News reported Friday. "Unemployment recipients have been complaining for months about the identity verification service ID.me, which uses a combination of biometric information and official documents to confirm that applicants are who they claim to be. The complaints reached another crescendo this week after Axios published a 'deep dive' article about the threat of unemployment fraud based on statistics provided to the outlet by ID.me."
"Some unemployment applicants have said that ID.me's facial recognition models fail to properly identify them (generally speaking, facial recognition technology is notoriously less accurate for women and people of color). And after their applications were put on hold because their identity couldn't be verified, many should-be beneficiaries have had to wait days or weeks to reach an ID.me 'trusted referee' who could confirm what the technology couldn't," Vice reported. "On Twitter, there are dozens of complaints about ID.me per day, and local news articles all over the country have detailed the problem over the course of months. In California, 1.4 million unemployment beneficiary accounts were abruptly suspended on New Year's Eve and the beneficiaries were required to re-verify their identity using ID.me, a process which many found difficult and resulted in them waiting for weeks to reactivate their accounts while they struggled to make ends meet."
It's not just California using the software.
"In Colorado, benefit recipients who had no problem establishing their identity before ID.me took over were suddenly rejected and went months without receiving the payments they were eligible for," Vice reported. "The story is similar in Florida, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Arizona, and many other states."
The company keeps increasing their claims of unemployment fraud.
"A quick search for tweets directed at ID.me shows reams of people locked out of their unemployment accounts by the company. At least 21 states use ID.me to detect fraudulent benefit claims. The spread of the technology has coincided with an aggressive media blitz from Hall in which he has stoked fears about the crisis of unemployment fraud using some fluid statistics," Vice reported. "In February, he told an Oregon TV station that unemployment fraud had cost the country $100 billion. Several weeks later, he told a Montana TV station that unemployment fraud had cost the country nearly $200 billion. The next month, he was telling a San Diego station that unemployment fraud would cost $300 billion. By the time ID.me reached Axios, it was $400 billion."
Vice News suggests skepticism is necessary when evaluating the numbers cited by the company.
"It's possible that the rate of successful unemployment fraud is growing rapidly—hence Hall's rising cost estimates—but ID.me also has a vested interest in depicting fraud as a major problem, which Hall has repeatedly done. It makes sense for a company that makes anti-fraud technology to study fraud; it's also fair for the general public to be skeptical of fraud statistics published by companies that would benefit from showing that fraud is a major problem," Vice noted. "The Axios article has been widely criticized for using ID.me—a company with a financial incentive to inflate the rate of unemployment fraud—as its main source. And while many local news outlets have provided great coverage of the pain caused by delays due to ID.me's system, others have run with stories similar to Axios's, citing the company's numbers. The Axios article was also immediately cited by Republicans in the House of Representatives as evidence of widespread defrauding of the U.S. government."
Louisville Metro Police Department Det. Brian Bailey has resigned after facing accusations of sexual misconduct that go back years, WDRB News reported Friday.
"Bailey was a prolific narcotics detective who obtained more residential search warrants than any other officer between January 2019 and June 2020, according to a joint investigation by KyCIR and WDRB News. The warrants virtually always were based on evidence from confidential informants — and he's been accused of sexually abusing and harassing women he had coerced into becoming informants," the network reported. "In all, four women working as confidential informants have publicly accused Bailey of sending explicit photos and forcing them to engage in sexual acts under the threat of criminal charges, and he's been investigated internally at least twice."
Attorney Vince Johnson represents two of the women and says Bailey "should have been fired by LMPD many years ago."
"That would have saved my clients and others from his pattern of sexual abuse," Johnson explained.
Bailey was placed on paid administrative leave in May of 2020.
"Before he was taken off the streets, Bailey was notorious for search warrants based on information provided by confidential informants. Bailey obtained more residential search warrants than any other LMPD officer between January 2019 and June 2020, according to an analysis by KyCIR and WDRB News of all 472 publicly available warrants from that period. He obtained more search warrants than the next two officers combined," WDRB reports. "In lawsuits, Bailey is accused of coercing women to work as confidential informants. One woman claims he pressured and threatened her to work as a confidential informant after arresting her boyfriend on drug charges in July 2018. The woman — who is not named in the lawsuit — claimed Bailey sexually assaulted her for two years while she worked as an informant."
The network reported in May that a lawsuit against Bailey had "striking similarities" to the killing of Beonna Taylor by Louisville police.
"Louisville Metro Police officers are accused of violating a Louisville woman's constitutional rights and police policy when they executed a midnight raid in May 2019 over a drug investigation into her then-boyfriend, according to a lawsuit filed this week in Jefferson Circuit Court," the network reported. "Boyd wasn't charged with a crime in connection with the search. Her attorneys allege that the search was unlawful, and the warrant was based on false information. The suit, filed against nine LMPD officers, alleges they unlawfully broke into Boyd's home and took her property and seeks punitive damages. The circumstances of the case bear striking similarities to the investigation and subsequent raid that resulted in the police killing of Breonna Taylor — including some of the officers involved."
In April, the United States Department of Justice announced an investigation into systematic abuse by the Louisville Metro Police Department.
A TikTok video which has been viewed more than 2 million times shows a woman who appears to be a Walmart employee ordering a boy to leave the store after she accuses him of stealing.
"I was trying a shirt on at Walmart and Karen thought I was stealing," TikTok user @uglahnose wrote.
The video shows the boy filming himself trying on a shirt before the woman approaches him.
"Take that shirt off and put your shirt back on and get steppin'," the woman says.
"That's a nice shirt. Take it off, put your shirt back on and get out of my store," she added.
"What are you talking about? I'm not even trying to steal, I'm just trying it on," the boy responded.
"Really? Because that's a tag right there, 'extra large,'" the woman shoots back.
Watch the video below:
smh bro #karen #fypシ #funny #weird #walmart #PrimeDayShowPJParty
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