www.myfoxny.com FBI launches national facial recognition system NEW YORK (MYFOXNY) - The Federal Bureau of Investigation has fully rolled out a new biometric identification system that includes facial recognition technology. The FBI, working with the Criminal Justice Information Services Division, says the Next Generation Identification System is now fully operational. The system is designed to expand biometric identification capabilities across the country and eventually replace the FBI's current fingerprint system. The system includes two new databases. One, called Rap Back, enables FBI authorized entities the ability to receive ongoing status notifications of any criminal history reported on specific individuals. The bureau says that it will help law enforcement agencies, probation and parole offices, and others greatly improve their effectiveness by being advised of subsequent criminal activity of persons under investigation or supervision. The second is called the Interstate Photo System. IPS facial recognition service will provide law enforcement agencies across the country an image-searching capability of photographs associated with criminal identities. The Feds say it is a significant step forward for the criminal justice community in utilizing biometrics as an investigative tool. This latest phase ois only one portion of the FBI's NGI System. Since phase one was deployed in February 2011, the NGI system has introduced enhanced automated fingerprint and latent search capabilities, mobile fingerprint identification, and electronic image storage. More than 18,000 law enforcement agencies and other authorized criminal justice partners across the country will have access to the system 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. I'm sure we can trust them not to abuse this awesome new power they now have.