Cloud-Based Data and Facial Recognition Legislation Discussed

Right before the legislative session starts, the Data Practices Subcommittee met to discuss cloud-based data and facial recognition, two issues that could affect cities.
(Published Feb 10, 2020)

The Legislative Coordinating Commission Subcommittee on Data Practices met on Jan. 30 and discussed cloud-based data and facial recognition.

Cloud-based data

The subcommittee discussed potential legislation regarding data practices as it pertains to cloud-based data. There were conversations last year about such legislation.

After initial legislative conversations, the League met four times between October 2019 and January 2020 with other stakeholders, including counties and the Minnesota Coalition on Government Information (MNCOGI). MNCOGI representatives had concerns about how government entities treat cloud-based data.

As a result of this series of stakeholder meetings, MNCOGI representatives told the Data Practices Subcommittee that it is no longer proposing legislation. They presented a summary of the results of the stakeholder meetings.

MNCOGI also testified to and provided an analysis of Public Record Media v. DEED and Greater MSP, the case that prompted this legislative conversation.

Facial recognition

The Data Practices Subcommittee also discussed the first working draft of a bill related to facial recognition. (Note: because the legislative session has not yet started, there are no official bill numbers.)

Legislators emphasized that this is an initial draft that is meant to be the basis for continued conversation on this issue.

The draft bill currently includes:

  • A prohibition of law enforcement entering into an agreement with a private entity for facial recognition data.
  • A requirement that if a law enforcement agency has facial recognition data:
    • It would need to comply with administrative requirements (similar to body-worn cameras and automated license plate readers), and
    • Data subjects would generally have to have access to this data.
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