nav search
Data Centre Software Security DevOps Business Personal Tech Science Emergent Tech Bootnotes
BOFH
Lectures

back to article
Now Europe wants a four-million-quid AI-powered lie detector at border checkpoints

Neil Barnes Silver badge

the potential risk posed by the traveler will be recalculated

After all that faffing around, he's probably quite annoyed...

What's the betting the queue for the 'further checking' will be just as long as the queue at immigration normally is?

Voland's right hand Silver badge

Re: the potential risk posed by the traveler will be recalculated

Nope they are not.

Anger, denial, bargaining, acceptance - the 4 stages of dealing with death and a Hungarian checkpoint. Or in other words - welcome to hell.

By the end of the first hour you are at anger, second - denial, third - bargaining (you are starting to look at ways to jump the queue and bargain your way through) and in the fourth hour you are clearly and definitely at "acceptance". The average wait at Horgos or Subbotica on Friday/Saturday/Sunday in summer is > 4h.

I am willing to do a detour via Romania or even via places where you wish you were driving an armoured personnel carrier (ones UK companies refuse to give you an insurance for) to go around them.

So, no, the punters will not be annoyed. They will be way past that.

Version 1.0 Silver badge

Re: the potential risk posed by the traveler will be recalculated

Maybe - but I think this would be an easy system to pass though with a little preparation if you have the resources behind you to pre-test an operative before they walk through.

Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
Joke

Re: the potential risk posed by the traveler will be recalculated

@Voland's right hand

places where you wish you were driving an armoured personnel carrier (ones UK companies refuse to give you an insurance for)

...I am sure there are UK companies who will sell you an armoured personnel carrier. You may also be lucky enough to get injured killed by a projectile manufactured in the UK - one must be thankful that it's not some rubbish ammo from from elsewhere.

BillG Silver badge
Mushroom

Re: the potential risk posed by the traveler will be recalculated

@Fruit and Nutcase wrote: ..I am sure there are UK companies who will sell you an armoured personnel carrier.

Why bother when Amazon can deliver your tank for you!

Amazon.com: JL421 Badonkadonk Land Cruiser/Tank

From Amazon: "The JL421 Badonkadonk is a completely unique, extremely rare land vehicle and battle tank. Designed with versatility in mind, the Donk can transport cargo or a crew of five internally or on the roof, and can be piloted from within the armored shell or from an exposed standing position through the hatch, thanks to special one-way steel mesh armor windows and a control stick that pivots up and down to allow piloting from the standing or seated positions. The interior is fully carpeted and cozy, with accent lighting and room for up to five people. A 400 watt premium sound system with PA is mounted to project sound both into the cabin and outward from behind the windows. The exterior is a steel shell with a rust patina, and features head and tail lights, turn signal lights, trim lighting, underbody lighting, fixed slats protecting the windows, and a unique industrial-strength rubberized flexible skirt that shields and protects the wheels to within an inch of the ground, while still allowing for enough flex to give clearance over bumpy and uneven terrain. Master power, ignition, all lighting, and stereo features are controlled from a single switchboard to the left of the driver, again accessible from either the seated or standing position. Standard drive is an air-cooled, 6hp Tecumseh gasoline (unleaded only) engine, with centrifugal clutch, giving the Donk a top speed of 40 mph....Price does not include shipping and handling."

As always, you should read the Amazon reviews first before purchasing.

Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

Re: the potential risk posed by the traveler will be recalculated

@BillG

"Why bother when Amazon can deliver your tank for you!

Amazon.com: JL421 Badonkadonk Land Cruiser/Tank"

...6hp Tecumseh gasoline (unleaded only) engine, with centrifugal clutch"

If it has a 6hp engine with a centrifugal clutch, it looks as if it is a bit of a toy. A Toyota Land Cruiser would be a much better bet - the vehicle of choice for insurgents the world over

southen bastard

Re: the potential risk posed by the traveler will be recalculated

I regret to inform you that this great product is no longer available.

the reviews are very positive, and there seems to be a lot of happy customers,

i will be building a new improved model stay posted

Voland's right hand Silver badge

Re: the potential risk posed by the traveler will be recalculated

.I am sure there are UK companies who will sell you an armoured personnel carrier.

Last time I heard, UK military goods are not very welcome in Republica Srpska (that is the detour I had in mind). So I would rather stick to a second hand BTR-2.

On a more serious note, the list of countries looks weird. I have not crossed a Baltic state border lately, but the other "testers" have issues which have nothing to do with "lie detector needed" on their border checkpoints. It is the last place I would test something like this.

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

Re: the potential risk posed by the traveler will be recalculated

Really? Where were you for the last 6 weeks then?

Ledswinger Silver badge

£4m doesn't go far

Especially spread across public sector procurement and teams split across nine countries, public, private and academic institutions. Which means either:

1) It is a budget affair that will work as badly as any other state sponsored AI and facial recognition mess up (like the Metropolitan Police's failed facial recognition efforts)

2) The EU are lying, and the real cost is much, much higher (and it still won't work)

3) These costs are just for a web front end to a pre-existing AI/recognition system being sold by a large tech company like IBM, Amazon or Google (and it STILL won't work).

Elmer Phud Silver badge

Re: £4m doesn't go far

Having problems here trying to work out exactly what is irking you,

Local funding, EU funding or the cabal of 'big tech'.

Ledswinger Silver badge

Re: £4m doesn't go far

Having problems here trying to work out exactly what is irking you,

Nothing really, other than the foolish belief that this is going to work.

My national share of the £4m is about 11%, say £400k, and that's a drop in the ocean against the waste of hundreds of billions by the UK government on unneeded projects like HS2 and Heathrow R3, or grossly over-expensive projects like Hinkley Point and the rest of the nuclear programme, the Great Renewable Energy Scam, any defence procurement project, or anything spent by the Home Office or DWP, all of Gordon Brown's PFI crimes, and most centralised IT ideas for the NHS.

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

Re: £4m doesn't go far

(1) Define "waste of money".

(2) Example of what is not a "waste of money"

(3) Source of clairvoyance. "foolish belief that this is going to work"

(4) Please ask source for the lotto numbers.

Much appreciated.

Smooth Newt Silver badge

Re: £4m doesn't go far

"(1) Define "waste of money".

(2) Example of what is not a "waste of money"

(3) Source of clairvoyance. "foolish belief that this is going to work"

(4) Please ask source for the lotto numbers."

For goodness sake, it's an underfunded project to achieve an unclear goal using uncertain technology.

Previous attempts at this sort of thing have proved unsuccessful at best, and a public relations disaster at worst, and there is nothing in this project to suggest it will fare any better. How far do you think £4m split 13 ways goes.

And I'm not sure it is even desirable - it is always a bad idea in the long run to build tools which can be trivially repurposed to suppress dissent - how do you think China, Saudi Arabia and your local police force will repurpose and abuse this if it worked?

LOL123

Re: £4m doesn't go far

What makes you think this is for an actual system and not just for a proposal or feasiblity study?

£4 million will go a long way to get a concept proposal out i.e. paperware.

https://cordis.europa.eu/project/rcn/202703_en.html

look at the cost splits - this is not for a production system, the headline is click and commetard bait.

https://www.iborderctrl.eu/Publications

What has been done with the money this far.

People here are leaping to the assumption that the £4m is for a working field ready system.

LOL123

Re: £4m doesn't go far

It might be just an integration project too:

https://www.iborderctrl.eu/Related-Projects

anyway the point being commenters(commentards?) here are leaping to this being the total spend on a production system.

Epistemic arrogance?

jmch Silver badge

Re: £4m doesn't go far

Spend a little you get accused of not spending enough, spend a lot and you're accused of spending too much and wasting huge amounts of taxpayer money. Rather like a tabloid headlining a (usually black) footballer one day for shopping at Gregg's and the next day for spending 6 figures on a car.

So what IS the 'correct' level of spending for this sort of project?

Incidentally, "The EU has thrown 4.5 million at a project" is not the same as "4.5 million got spent on this project". It's quite likely that all the research universtities etc could have come up with some funding of their own, maybe also some private funding. Secondly, I don't think 5-10 million is too little for the research and prototype development stages especially if they use standard PCs/webcams and not any custom-made hardware.

Daniel von Asmuth Bronze badge
Coat

£ 1 goes far enough

You can take a coin, toss it towards the heavens and if it falls back onto the earth with its head up, the refugee may enter the Euil Empire, tails tell (s)he will be taken to the throne of Trump.

JohnFen Silver badge

Re: £4m doesn't go far

"So what IS the 'correct' level of spending for this sort of project?"

Without some sort of evidence that it has even a chance of working, the correct level is zero.

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

What are they going to train it with and what if lets say 30% are telling a small lie to gain entry anyway?

What if they are a genuine refugee that made the mistake of trying to enter a hostile country first? Do they get turned away?

Lie detectors are not 100% accurate and AI isn't going to change that.

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

I would vote for it if ...

... they use suitable training data. I propose recordings of TV interviews with politicians.

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Language/Accent?

And what if the questions are being asked in a language in which the perfectly legitimate traveller is not fluent, and is struggling to understand the question & formulate an acceptable answer from their limited vocabulary? Current speech recognition "AIs" have enough trouble with regional accents as it is.

Mongrel

Re: I would vote for it if ...

That's terrible training, you need a mix of lies and truth to teach it properly

"lie...lie....lie...lie"

"But you're not even looking at the screen anymore"

"Don't need to"

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

What are they going to train it with?

"Yes, I really am looking forward to this two-week beach holiday with the family..." :-)

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

Re: What are they going to train it with?

Just repeat "Two Weeks" (see image with this article)

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

Polygraph Accuracy

Indeed. The more comfortable the person is with telling a lie, the harder it is for it to be 'detected.' I have passed a poly myself, knowing the consequences were very undesirable (not quite severe) should I have failed. I did lie during the examination, and was not entirely troubled about it. Part of me lied to protect my secrets, which is why most liars lie to begin with I suspect, but a small part just wanted to see if I could defeat the machine. I'm extremely less impressed with anyone who can defeat such an exam, now that I have done it myself. I don't imagine many serious people trying to gain entry to a country to do ill would have difficulty during such a test.

Anonymous for obvious reasons.

JetSetJim Silver badge

Re: Polygraph Accuracy

I doubt the aim of this is to actually improve anything, merely to add to the layers of control.

AI based polygraphs are going to be no better than a regular polygraph, and just adds to the theatre of security being put in place because we have to "think of the (illegal) immigrants", now that we're pulling up the European drawbridge and going all isolationist.

We can't be British (aka English) if we let Johnny & Jane Foreigner in to dilute our National Integrity(TM)

a_yank_lurker Silver badge

"Lie detectors are not 100% accurate and AI isn't going to change that." - Over here in feraldom lie detectors are not admissable in court as evidence. So either the EU is allowing something on the order of reading goat entrails to make 'decisions' for them or they go back to the old fashioned way of actually doing real police type work.

jmch Silver badge

"Lie detectors are not 100% accurate and AI isn't going to change that."

I don't think the purpose of the system is to be 100% accurate, and it doesn't look like it's being sold that way either.

jmch Silver badge

Re: Language/Accent?

"And what if the questions are being asked in a language in which the perfectly legitimate traveller is not fluent, and is struggling to understand the question & formulate an acceptable answer from their limited vocabulary? "

The article says the questions will be presented in the travellers' language. Not sure they will be able to accommodate all travellers in the case of some exotic languages... but then again if the system doesn't handle a language, what's teh chances that any of the border guards can communicate with that person anyway?

jmch Silver badge

Re: Polygraph Accuracy

"theatre of security being put in place because we have to "think of the (illegal) immigrants"

incidentally this system will be used at legitimate crossings by people legitimately trying to enter the EU using a passport and possibly a visa application. The real illegal immigration is coming overland via Turkey or by boat to Spain / Italy / Malta / Greece

Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

Re: Language/Accent?

>a language in which the perfectly legitimate traveller is not fluent

The system will ask the questions in English but in ALL-CAPS, the foreigners all speak English if you shout

bombastic bob Silver badge
Trollface

Re: What are they going to train it with?

how about "the caravans" currently traversing Mexico?

just have it focus on the key words and tricky phrases they're taught by the coyote's and "advocate" lawyers. Some good "lie" examples there, at any rate.

troll icon, because, obvious

dnicholas Bronze badge

Re: Polygraph Accuracy

""theatre of security being put in place because we have to "think of the (illegal) immigrants"

incidentally this system will be used at legitimate crossings by people legitimately trying to enter the EU using a passport and possibly a visa application. The real illegal immigration is coming overland via Turkey or by boat to Spain / Italy / Malta / Greece"

People voted for Brexit on the back of worrying about illegal aliens. Never did it occur to them that illegals will come regardless of immigration law, that's their whole modus operandi...

JohnFen Silver badge

"Lie detectors are not 100% accurate"

That's a serious understatement. Current lie detectors don't even beat chance.

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

Re: Polygraph Accuracy

"We can't be British (aka English) if we let Johnny & Jane Foreigner in to dilute our National Integrity(TM)" nice idea but the evidence is against it.

Anyone with wealth to spend here can come to the UK and stay if they bribe the right people, same as the other third world setups.

Sadly having wealth has never prevent immigrants from being a danger to the UK however this is never taken into account since the people who control the setup are whores with morals that a snake would look down upon. The actual outcome of the new system will be that border control now have a "impartial" IT third party to back up their arbitrary exclusions.

For the locals seeking to cross a border it just means that they can blame their failures upon the computer.

MachDiamond Silver badge

Re: Language/Accent?

You bet me to it, Phil. Let's also not forget that it took 90 minutes for the baggage to get unloaded so you can drag it through customs and there are no trollies on your side of the barrier. You are still trying to get blood to circulate through your lower body after being crammed in a seat too small to contain anybody larger than a 6 year old malnourished child from Bangladesh. You need both a toilet (functional) and your blood sugar has falling through the floor. Sod the AI, the examiner has the most impenetrable regional accent you have ever come across. The news is showing that another boat load of "refugees" have been welcomed ashore by the navy and they've been given a warm blanket and a hot meal as you are standing in an over-airconditioned room dying of hunger.

I can easily visualize politicians believing that AI is the answer without every having defined what the problem is they are trying to solve. First define the problem and then train examiners properly. An AI isn't going to take into account that the flight the people came from just flew through major turbulence for the past 2 hours and drinks/meals couldn't be served and trips to the lav were limited and acrobatic, to say the least. It may not be able to adjust to people that are coming from many different parts of the world in random order.

What happens when accusations are made that the AI is using "racial profiling"?

MachDiamond Silver badge

Re: Polygraph Accuracy

The best way to pass a lie detector test is to avoid having to take it in the first place. If I'm planning on doing bad things in another country, I am also likely to not want to go through any sort of customs screening. Once you are in a country, it's far less likely that you will be caught having come in informally. I certainly don't want an entry stamp in my passport.

RedCardinal

>>Lie detectors are not 100% accurate

Never mind 100%, lie detectors are a completely discredited technology...

handle bars

Once in though you can go from country to country plotting what you like...

Rich 11 Silver badge

You're right. We need to clamp down on freedom of movement. We should section off each country and each region with each country into separate military districts and block all movement between them unless a citizen has the appropriate visa. It worked for Soviet Russia and it will work for us.

Elmer Phud Silver badge

Already exists, both as 'diplomatic' travel and executive jets.

cantankerous swineherd Silver badge

sooner they stop those Lancastrians infiltrating via the woodhead pass tbe better.

Rich 11 Silver badge

sooner they stop those Lancastrians infiltrating via the woodhead pass tbe better.

Comin' over eer wi' their black puddin' an' tryin' ter barter it fer a good fish supper...

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

Makes nipping over for the day on a booze run sound like a bundle of laughs.

Teiwaz Silver badge

Makes nipping over for the day on a booze run sound like a bundle of laughs.

I'd honestly not be surprised to hear that this whole project was a British idea originally, and they were sounding out whether the Europeans would kick up another fuss about them using it on UK daytrippers over that might be depriving the taxman over the matter of a couple of bottles of plonk and a month or twos supply of ciggies.

codejunky Silver badge
Facepalm

@ Teiwaz

"I'd honestly not be surprised to hear that this whole project was a British idea originally"

Yeah because the EU dont have plenty of idiots and busybodies that it must be the brits. And I am sure once we leave they will no longer be in multiple self inflicted crises and suddenly even be competent enough to run a pissup in a brewery. Screw leavers expecting unicorns this is solid gold dreaming.

melts

You're in a desert, walking along in the sand, when all of a sudden...

"You look down and you see a tortoise, Leon. It's crawling towards you."

"You reach down and you flip the tortoise over on its back, Leon."

"The tortoise lays on its back, its belly baking in the hot sun, beating its legs, trying to turn itself over but it can't, not without for your help. But you're not helping."

"I mean you're not helping. Why is that Leon?"

maybe they can use this question scenario...

and I'm guessing you're in trouble if they ask you to say only good things you can think of about your mother

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

Re: You're in a desert, walking along in the sand, when all of a sudden...

Pedantically, wouldn't that require the *human* to be asking questions directed at the AI?

Page:

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

The Register - Independent news and views for the tech community. Part of Situation Publishing