US Army soldiers will scan the irises of Afghan civilians in 2012 as part of a military effort to collect biometric information from much of Afghanistan’s population. Jose Cabesus via Getty Images / AFP
In the wake of the Taliban’s takeover of Kabul and the expulsion of the Afghan government Alert report Armed groups have shown that biometric data collected by the United States may be accessible to track Afghanistan, including those who worked in the United States and the Allies.
Afghans who once supported the United States hide Also Destroy Physical and digital evidence of their identity.Many Afghans have an identity document When Database The storage of personally identifiable data can be transformed as follows: Execution warrant In the hands of the Taliban.
This potential data breach underscores data protection in the following zones: ConflictIn particular, biometric data and databases that connect online activities to physical locations can be life-threatening issues.my research Work with journalist When Privacy advocate Those studying biometric cyber surveillance have predicted the privacy and security risks of these data.
Research journalist Annie Jacobson records in her book the birth of a biometric-led war in Afghanistan after the 9/11 terrorist attacks.First platoon.. The Pentagon has seen biometric data, what it calls an “identity advantage,” as the basis for multiple counter-terrorism and counterinsurgency strategies. Identity dominance means that the military can track people who they consider to be potential threats, regardless of alias, and ultimately refuses to use anonymity to hide their activities.
By 2004, thousands of U.S. military personnel had been trained to collect biometric data to support the war in Afghanistan and Iraq. By 2007, the U.S. military was collecting biometric data primarily through mobile devices such as: Biometric automatic toolset (BAT) and Handheld inter-ministerial ID detector (HIIDE). BAT includes a laptop, fingerprint reader, iris scanner and camera. HIIDE is one small device that incorporates a fingerprint reader, iris scanner and camera. Users of these devices can collect iris and fingerprint scans and facial photographs and match them against entries in military databases and biometric watchlists.
In addition to biometric data, the system contains biographical and contextual data such as criminal and terrorist watchlist records, so users can determine if an individual is flagged as a suspect in the system. You can judge. Intelligence analysts can also use this system to monitor people’s movements and activities by tracking biometric data recorded by the military in the field.
By 2011, 10 years after 9/11, Pentagon Maintains approximately 4.8 million biometric records Records of about 630,000 people in Afghanistan and Iraq were collected using HIIDE devices.Also by that time, it was in use by the U.S. military of the Afghan government and its military partners. Biometric intelligence Also Biometric Cyber Intelligence On the battlefield to identify and track the rebels.
In 2013, the U.S. Army and Marine Corps Biometric registration and screening equipmentRegistered iris scans, fingerprints and digital facial photographs of “interested people” in Afghanistan.That device has been replaced by Identity Dominance System-Marines In 2017, using a laptop with a biometric data collection sensor, Known as a secure electronic registration kit..
Over the years, to support these military goals, the Pentagon has been 80% of Afghanistan’s population, About 32 million people at today’s population level. It is unknown how close the army has come to this goal.
More data equals more at-risk people
The US Department of Defense and the Afghan government have eventually adopted this technology for a variety of everyday government applications, in addition to the use of biometric data by the US and Afghan forces for security purposes.These are included evidence For criminal prosecution Liquidation With Afghan workers for employment Election security..
In addition, the Afghan National Identity System and voter registration database contained sensitive data such as: Ethnic data.. Afghanistan ID, e-Tadhkirah,teeth Electronic identification document containing biometric data, This increases the privacy risk posed by the Taliban’s access to the national identity system.
After the Taliban returns to power, it is premature to know if and to what extent the Taliban can command biometric data once held by the US military. According to one report, the Taliban may not have access to biometric data collected through HIIDE. Lack of technical capacity to do so.. However, the Taliban may be able to rely on Pakistan’s long-time ally, the Inter-Services Intelligence Agency, to assist in obtaining the data. Like many national intelligence agencies, the ISI probably has the necessary technology.
Another report is the Taliban We have already started to introduce “biometrics machine” Conduct a “house-to-house inspection” to identify former Afghan officials and security forces.This is consistent with a previous Afghan news report explaining the Taliban subject. Bus passengers Biometric screening and use of biometric data the goal Afghan security forces for kidnapping and assassination.
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Concerns about collecting biometric data
In the years following 9/11, researchers, activists, and policy makers have raised concerns that the mass collection, storage, and analysis of sensitive biometric data poses a danger. Right to privacy When human rights.. Reports that the Taliban may have access to US biometric data stored by the military show that those concerns were not groundless. They reveal potential cybersecurity vulnerabilities in US military biometric systems. In particular, this situation raises questions about the security of mobile biometric data collection devices used in Afghanistan.
Data privacy and cybersecurity concerns surrounding the Taliban’s access to US and former Afghan government databases are warnings of the future. In building biometric-driven warfare technologies and protocols Assumed by the U.S. Department of Defense The Afghan government has the minimum stability needed to protect its data.
The U.S. military Confidential data – Biometric and biographical data, eavesdropping data and communications, geopositional data, government records – can fall into the hands of the enemy. In addition to building robust security to protect against unauthorized access, the Pentagon should use this as an opportunity to first ask if biometric data needs to be collected.
Understanding the unintended consequences of US experiments in biometric-driven warfare and biometric cyber intelligence is critical to making a decision. Whether and how The military needs to collect biometric information. In the case of Afghanistan, the biometric data used by the U.S. military and the Afghan government to track the Taliban will one day (if not yet used) to track the Taliban-backed Afghanistan. May be done.
This article will be republished from conversation, A non-profit news site aimed at sharing ideas from academic experts. It was written by: Margaret Fu, Pennsylvania State University..
Margaret Hu has partnered with the Future of Privacy Forum, a non-profit think tank that provides policy guidance on data privacy. Some of Hu’s research assistants are funded by Microsoft Research. She was honored for speaking at an event hosted by Microsoft Research.