When soccer fans flock to Cardiff for the Champion’s League final on June 3rd, British police will be greeting them with a new facial recognition system.

Reports say that the South Wales police will be conducting a live pilot test of the new system on the day of the game, to be deployed at Cardiff’s main train station as well as various areas surrounding Principality Stadium.

As described in a public government tender, the system will scan for matches against 500,000 persons of interest already stored in a police database. The agency will pay 177,000 pounds for the pilot.

The move comes amid a newfound push for facial recognition systems in the US, which has been met by significant criticism from privacy advocates.


Customs and Border Protection is currently building a system that would use facial recognition to scan all US visa holders as they exit the country, a program that has been accelerated by President Trump.

Critics worry the same systems could be integrated with law enforcement systems to turn airport visits into grounds for a law enforcement search.

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