EU considers 5-year facial recognition ban for public spaces

EU considers 5-year facial recognition ban for public spaces

The European Union is considering a five-year ban on biometric facial recognition in public areas to figure out how to prevent abuse of the technology, Reuters reports.

In an 18-page white paper by the EU’s executive, the Commission says there is a strong need for solid rules to complement existing privacy and data regulations in the region.

“Building on these existing provisions, the future regulatory framework could go further and include a time-limited ban on the use of facial recognition technology in public spaces,” the EU document said.

The Commission pushes for “a sound methodology for assessing the impacts of this technology and possible risk management measures could be identified and developed.”

It further states developers and AI users should have more accountability in these projects and EU countries should consider establishing specific authorities to audit the new guidelines.

Projects focused on security, research and development could be exempt from the ban.

Before making a decision, there will be a round of feedback. EU digital and antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager will deliver her motion next month.

The U.S. Congress is also paying more attention to the use of facial recognition. The House Oversight and Reform Committee has already investigated issues surrounding facial recognition three times, but it is uncertain when or if legislation will be passed.

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