Reintroduction of facial recognition legislation receives mixed responses

The reintroduction of the Facial Recognition and Biometric Technology Moratorium Act in the 117th Congress has received mixed responses.

An initial version of the legislation was introduced in 2020 but was reintroduced June 15 2021 by Sen. Edward Markey (D-Mass.)

“We do not have to forgo privacy and justice for safety,” said Senator Markey. “This legislation is about rooting out systemic racism and stopping invasive technologies from becoming irreversibly embedded...

McDonald’s drive-thru AI bot may have broken privacy law

McDonald’s announced earlier this month that it was deploying an AI chatbot to handle its drive-thru orders, but it turns out it might break privacy law.

The chatbot is the product of a voice recognition company McDonald’s snapped up in 2019 called Apprente which is now known as McD Tech Labs.

McDonald’s deployed the chatbots to ten of its restaurants in Chicago, Illinois. And there lies the issue.

The state of Illinois has some of the strictest data...

Amazon will continue to ban police from using its facial recognition AI

Amazon will extend a ban it enacted last year on the use of its facial recognition for law enforcement purposes.

The web giant’s Rekognition service is one of the most powerful facial recognition tools available. Last year, Amazon signed a one-year moratorium that banned its use by police departments following a string of cases where facial recognition services – from various providers – were found to be inaccurate and/or misused by law enforcement.

Amazon has now...

ACLU joins over 50 groups in calling for Homeland Security to halt use of Clearview AI

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has joined over 50 other rights and advocacy groups in calling for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to halt the use of Clearview AI’s controversial facial recognition system.

In a letter (PDF) addressed to DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, the signatories wrote: “The undersigned organizations have serious concerns about the federal government’s use of facial recognition technology provided by private company Clearview AI. We...

EU regulation sets fines of €20M or up to 4% of turnover for AI misuse

A leaked draft of EU regulation around the use of AI sets hefty fines of up to €20 million or four percent of global turnover (whichever is greater.)

The regulation (PDF) was first reported by Politico and is expected to be announced next week on April 21st.

In the draft, the legislation’s authors wrote:

“Some of the uses and applications of artificial intelligence may generate risks and cause harm to interests and rights that are protected by Union law....

TUC: Employment law gaps will lead to staff ‘hired and fired by algorithm’

Legal experts and the Trades Union Congress (TUC) have warned that gaps in employment law will lead to staff “hired and fired by algorithm”.

A report, commissioned by the TUC and carried out by leading employment rights lawyers Robin Allen QC and Dee Masters from the AI Law Consultancy, claims there are “huge gaps” in British law.

“The TUC is right to call for urgent legislative changes to ensure that workers and companies can both enjoy the benefits of AI,”...

Police use of Clearview AI’s facial recognition increased 26% after Capitol raid

Clearview AI reports that police use of the company’s highly-controversial facial recognition system jumped 26 percent following the raid on the Capitol.

The facial recognition system relies on scraping the data of people from across the web without their explicit consent, a practice which has naturally raised some eyebrows—including the ACLU’s which called it a “nightmare scenario” for privacy.

Around three billion images are said to have been scraped for...

University College London: Deepfakes are the ‘most serious’ AI crime threat

Researchers from University College London have released a ranking of what experts believe to be the most serious AI crime threats.

The researchers first created a list of 20 expected ways AI will be used by criminals within the next 15 years. 31 experts were then asked to rank them by potential severity.

Deepfakes – AI-generated images, videos, and articles – ranked top of the list as the most serious threat.

New and dangerous territory

It’s of little...

Researchers create AI bot to protect the identities of BLM protesters

Researchers from Stanford have created an AI-powered bot to automatically cover up the faces of Black Lives Matter protesters in photos.

Everyone should have the right to protest. And, if done legally, to do so without fear of having things like their future job prospects ruined because they've been snapped at a demonstration – from which a select few may have gone on to do criminal acts such as arson and looting.

With images from the protests being widely shared on...

UK and Australia launch joint probe into Clearview AI’s mass data scraping

The UK and Australia have launched a joint probe into the controversial “data scraping” practices of Clearview AI.

Clearview AI has repeatedly made headlines, and rarely for good reason. The company’s facial recognition technology is impressive but relies on scraping billions of people’s data from across the web.

“Common law has never recognised a right to privacy for your face,” Clearview AI lawyer Tor Ekeland argued recently.

Regulators in the UK...