Episode
May 23, 2019

What are the dangers of facial recognition technology?

Civil liberties groups say privacy should not be traded for protection, but governments argue it ensures safety.
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Last week, San Francisco, California became the first major city in the United States to ban the use of facial recognition technology by police and government agencies. But authorities – and even some civil society groups – contend that the technology could help fight crime and should not be banned completely. However, civil liberties organisations say such systems, if adopted widely, would compromise privacy and disproportionately target marginalised communities.

Such criticism has not prevented other governments in the world from promoting facial recognition networks in the name of security. Police departments across the UK have conducted street trials of facial recognition cameras, and the Chinese government has used the technology to track citizens and crackdown on the minority Uighur Muslim community.

So, is privacy the ultimate price for security?

In this episode, The Stream chats with civil liberties advocates and facial recognition specialists to explore the ethics of the technology and how it is being used around the globe.

On this episode of The Stream, we speak with:
Matt Cagle @matt_cagle
Technology and civil liberties attorney, ACLU of Northern California
aclu.org

Silkie Carlo @bbw1984
Director, Big Brother Watch
bigbrotherwatch.org.uk

Lily Newman @lilyhnewman
Security reporter, WIRED
wired.com/lily-hay-newman

Read more:
Congress found something to agree on: facial recognition - Quartz
As surveillance culture grows, can we even hope to escape its reach? - The Guardian
China has a new facial recognition app — this time for pandas - Washington Post

What do you think? Record a brief comment here, or leave your thoughts in the section below.

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