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The Constitutionality of Algorithmic Decision Systems Output in Light of the Probable Cause Requirement of the Fourth Amendment

Strahm, Lacey

I contend that Algorithmic Decision Systems (ADS) output cannot meet the explainability standard required to establish probable cause in legal proceedings, and thus should not be a viable option in the courtroom. ADS provide black and white answers to color-filled questions with no explanation as to how they arrived at their conclusion. In the event the system does produce some form of an explanation, the explanations are often unintelligible to humans because the machine's infrastructure is not designed to justify its work. ADS have no mechanism to interpret and understand the cause of a situation nor explain how it arrived at its decision output. Therefore, a legal claim established from ADS does not meet the standard necessary for establishing probable cause under the Fourth Amendment. ADS cannot provide enough reliable evidence to justify the output and thus could not meet the explainability requirement needed for a search warrant.

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More About This Work

Academic Units
American Studies
Thesis Advisors
Montás, Roosevelt
Bellovin, Steven Michael
Degree
B.A., Columbia University
Published Here
May 29, 2020

Notes

Fourth Amendment, Probable Cause, Alogthimc Decision Systems, ADS, Artificial Intelligence, AI, Machine Learning, ML, Bias, Proxy Variables