Incident 114: Amazon's Rekognition Falsely Matched Members of Congress to Mugshots

Description: Rekognition's face comparison feature was shown by the ACLU to have misidentified members of congress, and particularly members of colors, as other people who have been arrested using a mugshot database built on publicly available arrest photos.


New ReportNew ReportNew ResponseNew ResponseDiscoverDiscoverView HistoryView History
Alleged: Amazon developed and deployed an AI system, which harmed Rekognition users and arrested people.

Incident Stats

Incident ID
Report Count
Incident Date
Sean McGregor, Khoa Lam
Amazon’s Face Recognition Falsely Matched 28 Members of Congress With Mugshots · 2018

Amazon’s face surveillance technology is the target of growing opposition nationwide, and today, there are 28 more causes for concern. In a test the ACLU recently conducted of the facial recognition tool, called “Rekognition,” the software …


A "variant" is an incident that shares the same causative factors, produces similar harms, and involves the same intelligent systems as a known AI incident. Rather than index variants as entirely separate incidents, we list variations of incidents under the first similar incident submitted to the database. Unlike other submission types to the incident database, variants are not required to have reporting in evidence external to the Incident Database. Learn more from the research paper.

Similar Incidents

By textual similarity

Did our AI mess up? Flag the unrelated incidents