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DeWine Warns Feds: Don't Use Ohio Facial Data For ICE Raids

Ohio Driver's License

Ohio is among the states asked to provide photos from driver’s licensesso the FBI can use facial recognition software for identification and location purposes. It comes as federal immigration officials ramp up effortsto crack down on people who lack legal residency status.

Gov. Mike DeWine says federal authorities have been able to access Ohio’s facial recognition database, which includes Ohioans' driver’s license photos. However, DeWine says those photos shouldn’t be used for sweeping surveillance “dragnets” of Ohioans.

DeWine says, as attorney general, he appointed two separate bipartisan groups that came up with rules to ensure law enforcement agencies with access to the state’s facial recognition database are not using it improperly.

“This is not a situation where we take BMV pictures and just dump them to the FBI," DeWine says.

DeWine says these pictures have been used by police agencies for decades to identify dangerous criminals.

He notes facial recognition is just a faster process and adds it doesn’t mean anyone identified by the technology is guilty of anything. DeWine says using it in a way that suggests otherwise would be considered abuse of the system.

Jo Ingles is a professional journalist who covers politics and Ohio government for the Ohio Public Radio and Television for the Ohio Public Radio and Television Statehouse News Bureau. She reports on issues of importance to Ohioans including education, legislation, politics, and life and death issues such as capital punishment.