Algorithms in the Criminal Justice System: Assessing the UK Law Society’s Recommendations

Jun 07, 2019 | Maathangi Hariharan and Srivats Shankar

The United Kingdom Law Society releases the report on algorithms in the criminal justice system

The Technology and Law Public Policy Commission, United Kingdom Law Society, has released a report explaining the use of algorithms in the criminal justice system. The report which analyzes the role of the criminal justice system and algorithms in the administration of justice, particularly highlights the dangers algorithms pose to human rights and the risk it creates in undermining public trust.

Accordingly, the report emphasizes the dangers of technology, including facial recognition, DNA profiling, and predictive crime mapping, among many others. Among the challenges recognized the report emphasizes the danger of bias that can develop within the system when oversimplifying data decisions. This could affect personal dignity, autonomy, human rights, minimize transparency, and affect elements of the criminal justice system.

In order to maintain accountability, the report recommends “explainable use” for the algorithms, which could include oversight, data protection, and ensuring lawfulness within the system. The report warns against algorithms becoming black boxes where there is no accountability or oversight into the functioning of the algorithm.

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Terminology

Deepfake

/diːpfeɪk/

Artificial General Intelligence

/ˌɑːtɪfɪʃl ˈdʒɛn(ə)r(ə)l ɪnˈtelɪɡəns/

Artificial Intelligence

/ˌɑːtɪfɪʃl ɪnˈtelɪɡəns/

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