The popular legal research and data brokerage firm LexisNexis signed a $16.8 million contract to sell information to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (article available here). The deal between LexisNexis and ICE will reportedly give agents access to a massive database aggregated from a buffet of public and private sources, and includes data points like the credit history, license plate numbers, and cell subscriber information for an untold number of people.
Though LexisNexis is perhaps best known for its role as a powerful scholarly and legal research tool, the company also caters to the immensely lucrative "risk" industry, providing, it says, 10,000 different data points on hundreds of millions of people to companies like financial institutions and insurance companies who want to, say, flag individuals with a history of fraud.
LexisNexis Risk Solutions is also marketed to law enforcement agencies, offering "advanced analytics to generate quality investigative leads, produce actionable intelligence and drive informed decisions" -- in other words, to find and arrest people.
The LexisNexis ICE deal appears to be providing a replacement for CLEAR, a risk industry service operated by Thomson Reuters that has been crucial to ICE's deportation efforts. In February, the Washington Post noted that the CLEAR contract was expiring and that it was "unclear whether the Biden administration will renew the deal or award a new contract."