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profiling

[proh-fahy-ling]
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noun
  1. the use of personal characteristics or behavior patterns to make generalizations about a person, as in gender profiling.
  2. the use of these characteristics to determine whether a person may be engaged in illegal activity, as in racial profiling.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
British Dictionary definitions for racial profiling

racial profiling

noun
  1. government activity directed at a suspect or group of suspects based solely on race

profiling

noun
  1. the practice of categorizing people and predicting their behaviour according to particular characteristics such as race or ageracial profiling
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for racial profiling

profiling

n.

by 1852 as a term in field engineering, verbal noun from profile (v.). The racial/ethnic stereotyping sense is attested from c.1991, American English.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper