Italy’s heritage police recently announced the release of a smartphone app that will allow people to take a photograph of art works that they suspect are stolen and then send the photo directly to the heritage police. The heritage police can then compare the photo to their archives, which include the largest data bank of stolen art in the world — about 5.7 million objects. There will also be information on the app about artwork that the police are searching for, and to help people find the nearest heritage police station.
I can’t help but wonder if the heritage police are being overly optimistic, or if Italians actually use their smart phones for more than taking selfies or playing Candy Crush. It will be interesting to see if this proves to be a valuable law enforcement tool, or winds up being taken down when it is overrun by pranksters and crackpots.
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