George Orwell's novel 1984 got one thing wrong. A surveillance state will not have people watching people, as the Stasi did in East Germany. Computers will be the ones watching people. Technology lets you perform surveillance at an industrial scale.
This is already happening in China, where facial recognition software is being used by law enforcement for catching relatively minor offenders such as jaywalkers to enabling much more disturbing activities such as tracking Uyghurs. The West has also seen a rise in the use of such software. For example, the controversial company Clearview AI has scraped approximately three billion photographs from the Web, which the company uses to sell facial recognition services to agencies including the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation.
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