The US Constitution provides for the right to privacy in the Fourth Amendment which states: “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” This protection is from the government. It is not a protection extended to you, for example, when you check “I agree to these terms and conditions” when using a private company’s software. And herein is a most egregious privacy violation for the world, presenting a clear prophetic danger.
According to the New York Times, start-up company Clearview AI, has made an app that allows someone who has obtained your picture to quickly discover your name, address, and other personal information. Cnet.com writes: “The app, says the Times, works by comparing a photo to a database of more than 3 billion pictures that Clearview says it’s scraped off Facebook, Venmo, YouTube and other sites. It then serves up matches, along with links to the sites where those database photos originally appeared. A name might easily be unearthed, and from there other info could be dug up online. The size of the Clearview database dwarfs others in use by law enforcement.”
Think about this: The FBI’s database, using passport and driver’s license photos, is among the largest in law enforcement, with over 641 million images of US citizens—compared with 3 billion held by Clearview. Law enforcement is currently using the app for a host of crime fighting. Think about the power in this app. In the wrong hands, including some law enforcement as we have seen with the FBI, CIA, NSA and others who have used their information skills for nefarious intentions, this empowers mass surveillance. In the hands of any person, it can be used as a device for stalking, kidnapping, human trafficking and more. The Clearview app isn’t currently available to the public, but the Times says police officers and Clearview investors think it will be in the future.
Those of us who watch for prophetic indicators see that this technology brings to mind just how Revelation 13:17 might be driven: “And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.” There is a lot of technology in the marketplace that can accelerate the identification of people. This technology and its subsequent generations, however, could inform a worldwide system that tracks the very movements of individual lives, where the right of privacy is abolished, and in doing so, identifies, seeks out, and compels people to either take the mark or be among the souls of Revelation 20:4 “that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God.” Something to think about in this fast-moving world of technology.