Clearview AI, the New York City-based facial recognition company, has had its entire client base list stolen by hackers, reports The Daily Beast. The list contains all the names of the customers of the controversial AI company and is sure to be the biggest scandal yet the company has faced since its founding in 2017.
In recent months, Clearview AI has been attacked from all sides by lawmakers, tech giants, and privacy advocates for its business practices, which include scraping public images of people from sites like LinkedIn, Venmo, Facebook, and YouTube. Clearview AI’s systems then allow clients to search for people in its database using these scraped images.
While several law enforcement agencies are known to use Clearview AI’s services, the breach of its entire client list may cause some embarrassment for organizations using its services who wish to remain unknown. As of now, however, it looks like Clearview AI’s client list hasn’t been made public—at least not yet.
Clearview AI made the disclosure of the breach in an email to clients, saying an intruder “gained unauthorized access” to the client list. When the Daily Beast contacted the company about the breach, Tor Ekeland, the company’s attorney said in a statement, “Security is Clearview’s top priority. Unfortunately, data breaches are part of life in the 21st century. Our servers were never accessed. We patched the flaw, and continue to work to strengthen our security.”