Jul 20, 2018

Beijing-based facial recognition developer to raise another $1 billion

A surveillance camera, which is part of a facial recognition technology test in Germany. Photo: Steffi Loos/Getty Images

SenseTime, a Beijing-based developer of facial recognition technologies, is in talks to raise around $1 billion from SoftBank Vision Fund, per Bloomberg.

Why it's the BFD: It's already the world's most valuable AI startup, having raised money earlier this year at a $4.5 billion valuation. And this additional money would help further shift the balance of power from privacy to security, with all of the trade-offs that entails.

  • Also: AnyVision, an Israeli developer of body and facial recognition technologies, just raised $28 millionin Series A funding led by Bosch.

Bottom line: "[SenseTime] is developing a service code-named 'Viper' to parse data from thousands of live camera feeds -- a platform it expects will prove invaluable in mass surveillance." — Selina Wang & Lulu Yilun Chen, Bloomberg

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Stocks fall 4% as sell-off worsens

A trader on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Photo: Johannes Eisele/AFP via Getty Images

Stocks fell more than 4% on Thursday, extending the market’s worst week since the financial crisis in 2008 following a spike in coronavirus cases around the world.

The big picture: All three indices closed in correction territory on Thursday, down over 10% from their recent record-highs amid a global market rout.

Coronavirus updates: California monitors 8,400 potential cases

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

33 people in California have tested positive for the coronavirus, and health officials are monitoring 8,400 people who have recently returned from "points of concern," Gov. Gavin Newsom said Thursday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has killed more than 2,800 people and infected over 82,000 others in some 50 countries and territories. The novel coronavirus is now affecting every continent but Antarctica, and the WHO said Wednesday the number of new cases reported outside China has exceeded those inside the country for the first time.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 1 hour ago - Health

Watchdog opens probe into VA secretary over handling of sexual assault claim

VA Secretary Robert Wilkie on Fox Business Network’s "The Evening Edit" on Jan. 7. Photo: Steven Ferdman/Getty Images

The Department of Veterans Affairs Inspector General Michael Missal said Thursday he had opened an investigation into VA Secretary Robert Wilkie after lawmakers demanded an inquiry into his handling of a sexual misconduct report, the Washington Post reports.

Context: Wilkie allegedly "worked to discredit" the credibility of Democratic aide and veteran Andrea Goldstein after she reported last fall "that a man groped and propositioned her in the main lobby of the agency's D.C. Medical Center," a senior VA official told the Post.