Google on-board with EU’s proposed temporary facial recognition ban
Category: #headline  By Akshay Kedari  Date: 2020-01-22
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Google on-board with EU’s proposed temporary facial recognition ban

Technology giants Google and Microsoft have reportedly taken opposing stances as the temporary five-year facial recognition ban suggested by the EU came to light. Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai has expressed his approval of the proposed ban, while Microsoft Chief Legal Officer Brad Smith contradicts the move.

Sundar Pichai has apparently stated that it is important for regulatory authorities to chart the course for facial recognition development. He said its better for governments to undergo a waiting period to truly understand the use of the technology, which will also allow enough time to establish a dedicated framework.

Brad Smith, however, dismissed the idea of a moratorium period, stating that facial recognition is a young technology, which is likely to improve over the years. He stressed that the way for continual advancement of the technology was to encourage wider adoption among the population, suggesting that the potential ban could be counterproductive to this development.

The EU has proposed the temporary ban to allow governments and regulatory authorities time to examine risks associated with the technology. While details regarding the ban have been revealed in the leaked proposal, the official announcement of the proposal could feature some changes.

The market is currently dictating the rules, with major tech firms expressing opposing views on the matter. Microsoft sells facial recognition technology, albeit with certain self-imposed restrictions, for instance, allowing the use of the technology by law enforcement in jails but not on the street.

Google, meanwhile, has been resolute in its decision to not sell facial recognition to customers, amid concerns regarding misuse and mass surveillance risks. While he has not explicitly argued for a ban in the past, Pichai is a staunch advocate of greater AI regulation. He expressed his belief that companies like Google and others cannot just develop innovative technologies and let markets dictate the terms regarding its usage.

The prospect of a nationwide ban in the US is unlikely, with the administration hinting at a hands-off approach to the regulation of AI technologies, such as facial recognition, citing pursuit of innovation.
 

Source Credit: https://www.theverge.com/2020/1/21/21075001/facial-recognition-ban-google-microsoft-eu-sundar-pichai-brad-smith

 

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Akshay Kedari    

Akshay Kedari

Akshay holds a Bachelor’s degree in computer engineering. Despite having a penchant for software development and the like, Akshay took to writing as a career owing to his passion for the field. Presently, Akshay writes articles for itresearchbrief.com and a few oth...

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