Sat | Sep 22, 2018

Federal 'extreme vetting' plan castigated by tech experts

Published:Friday | November 17, 2017 | 12:00 AM

Leading researchers are castigating a federal plan that would use artificial intelligence methods to scrutinise immigrants and visa applicants, saying it is unworkable as written and likely to be "inaccurate and biased" if deployed.

More than 50 computer and data scientists, mathematicians and other specialists in automated decision-making sent a joint letter Thursday urging the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to abandon the project, dubbed the 'Extreme Vetting Initiative'.

That plan has its roots in President Donald Trump's repeated pledge to subject immigrants seeking admission to the US to more intense scrutiny.

Over the summer, DHS published its goals for a system that would use computer algorithms to scan social media and other material in order to automatically flag undesirable entrants - and continuously scan the activities of those allowed in.

- AP