The UK's Data Protection Agency warns against reckless and inappropriate use of Live Face Recognition (LFR) in public places. Information Commissioner Elizabeth Denham, who today released a statement on the use of this biometric surveillance in public to establish what is known as the "rules of engagement," also noted that ...
The UK's chief data protection regulator has warned over reckless and inappropriate use of live facial recognition (LFR) in public places.
Publishing an opinion today on the use of this biometric surveillance in public â to set out what is dubbed as the ârules of engagementâ â the information commissioner, Elizabeth Denham, also noted that a number of investigations already undertaken by her office into planned applications of the tech have found problems in all cases.
âI am deeply concerned about the potential for live facial recognition (LFR) technology to be used inappropriately, excessively or even recklessly. When sensitive personal data is collected on a mass scale without people's knowledge, choice or control, the impacts could be significant,â she warned in a blog post.
âUses we've seen included addressing public safety concerns and creating biometric profiles to target people with personalised advertising.
âIt is telling that none of the organisations involved in our completed investigations were able to fully justify the processing and, of those systems that went live, none were fully compliant with the requirements of data protection law. All of the organisations chose to stop, or not proceed with, the use of LFR.â
âUnlike CCTV, LFR and its algorithms can automatically identify who you are and infer sensitive details about you. It can be used to instantly profile you to serve up personalised adverts or match your image against known shoplifters as you do your weekly grocery shop,â Denham added.
âIn future, there's the potential to overlay CCTV cameras with LFR, and even to combine it with social media data or other âbig data' systems â LFR is supercharged CCTV.â
The use of biometric technologies to identify individuals remotely sparks major human rights concerns, including around privacy and the risk of discrimination.
Across Europe there are campaigns â such as Reclaim your Face â calling for a ban on biometric mass surveillance.
In another targeted action, back in May, Privacy International and others filed legal challenges at the controversial US facial recognition company, Clearview AI, seeking to stop it from operating in Europe altogether. (Some regional police forces have been tapping in â including in Sweden where the force was fined by the national DPA earlier this year for unlawful use of the tech.)
But while there's major public opposition to biometric surveillance in Europe, the region's lawmakers have so far â at best â been fiddling around the edges of ...