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I agree 100% about how common it is. The industry also pays lip service about doing something about it. My last job was at a research institution and we had a data ethics czar, who's a very smart (Stats phd) guy and someone I consider a friend. A lot of his job was to go around the org and conferences talking about things like this.

While there's a lot of head nodding, nothing is ever actually addressed in day to day operations. Data scientists barely know what's going on when they throw things through TensorFlow. What matters is the outcome and the confusion matrix at the end.

I say this as someone who works in data and implements AI/ML platforms. Mr. Williams needs to find the biggest ambulance chasing lawyer and file civil suits not only the law enforcement agencies involved, but top down everyone at DataWorks from the president to the data scientist to the lowly engineer who put this in production.

These people have the power to ruin lives. They need to be made an example of and held accountable for the quality of their work.

Sounds like a license for developing software is inevitable then.

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