imagesBy Michael Snyder – ActivistPost – Should the government be trying to figure out if we are going to commit a crime in advance? That sounds like something out of a Tom Cruise movie, but the truth is that “pre-crime” technologies such as were portrayed in Minority Report are being aggressively developed, and some have actually already been deployed.

We live at a time when technology is advancing at an exponential rate, and it can be really hard to keep up with how rapidly our world is changing. In the future, authorities may not only be able to use pre-crime technology to read our minds, they might also be able to use technology to directly control our minds as well.

Yes, I know that sounds science fiction, but after I tell you about some cutting edge research that has been taking place at Harvard Medical School you might not think that such a notion seems so bizarre.

But first I want to discuss some of the very disturbing pre-crime technologies that the government is working on.

One of the most prominent programs is known as FAST (Future Attribute Screening Technology). According to Wikipedia, this pre-crime system is already so advanced that developers claim that it has about an 80% success rate…

Future Attribute Screening Technology (FAST) is a program created by the Department of Homeland Security. It was originally titled Project Hostile Intent. The purpose is to detect “Mal Intent” by screening people for “psychological and physiological indicators” in a “Mobile Screening Laboratory”.

The program was under the Homeland Security Advanced Research Agency and the Science & Technology Human Factors Behavior Science Division of DHS. In a meeting held on July 24, 2008 the DHS Under Secretary Jay Cohen stated, the goal is to create a new technology that would be working in real time as opposed to after a crime is already committed.

The DHS science spokesman John Verrico stated in September 2008 that preliminary testing had demonstrated 78% accuracy on mal-intent detection and 80% on deception.

The technology behind FAST is extremely complex, but it can be fooled. So once FAST is operational you better not get too nervous or have a particularly bad day, because according to Professor Margaret Hu the consequences of being “convicted” of a pre-crime by FAST could potentially include “deportation, prison, or death”…

FAST is currently under testing by DHS and has been described in press reports as a “precrime” program. If implemented, FAST will purportedly rely upon complex statistical algorithms that can aggregate data from multiple databases in an attempt to “predict” future criminal or terrorist acts, most likely through stealth cybersurveillance and covert data monitoring of ordinary citizens. The FAST program purports to assess whether an individual might pose a “precrime” threat through the capture of a range of data, including biometric data. In other words, FAST attempts to infer the security threat risk of future criminals and terrorists through data analysis.

Under FAST, biometric-based physiological and behavioral cues are captured through the following types of biometric data: body and eye movements, eye blink rate and pupil variation, body heat changes, and breathing patterns. Biometric- based linguistic cues include the capture of the following types of biometric data: voice pitch changes, alterations in rhythm, and changes in intonations of speech. Documents released by DHS indicate that individuals could be arrested and face other serious consequences based upon statistical algorithms and predictive analytical assessments. Specifically, projected consequences of FAST ‘can range from none to being temporarily detained to deportation, prison, or death.’

Perhaps you are reading this and you assume that the widespread implementation of such a system is still a long way off.

Well, if that is what you are thinking, you would be wrong.

[…] Via ActivistPost