Big Data May Help U.S. Screen Immigrants

Big Data

Photo by: Gulbenk via Wikimedia Commons


The immigration officials of the United States wants to use big data in order to screen the immigrants and visa applicants in the country. 

With the hope to develop an automated system that determines the person who will immigrate or visit the United States, the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) claimed that they wanted to use a technique from big data in screening the visa applicants. According to the officials, the project will gather all the available public data, like social media.

Some tech experts, though, are worried about the ICE’s target. The New York University of Law, Brennan Center for Justice’s co-director of Liberty and National Security Program Faiza Patel said: “This is creating this kind of open-ended algorithm which has an enormous potential to be discriminatory.”

As President Trump is vocal about wanting an immigration system that will admit people that adds to the national interest, ICE, on their part, has asked several software companies if they want to develop a computer system that makes determinations done through automation.

While there are critics as to how an algorithm can measure a person on his or her contribution to the society, there are already several software companies that showed their interest in creating the tool. These software providers include data analytics firm Giant Oak.