Facebook Ordered to Face Lawsuit Over Facial Recognition

Mark Zuckerberg

Image Courtesy of NY Mag

Cambridge Analytica is accused of acquiring the data of 87 million Facebook users through an academic researcher at the University of Cambridge, Alexander Kogan.

The company adds that the data it collects isn't covered by IL law, which explicitly prevents the collection of biometric data such as facial geometry, fingerprints and "voice prints". It is now unavailable in the United Kingdom, but has been a feature in the USA since 2011.

Facebook users sued in 2015, alleging violations of an IL state law about the privacy of biometric information. It's a hot-button issue, as sweeping new European Union privacy legislation requires Facebook and other tech companies to get explicit permission for using the technology. The faces in the database were scraped from as many as 35,000 videos and photos of terrorist training camps, terror attacks, and motivational videos.

While younger generations are switching to Instagram and Snapchat as their primary social media platforms, 82 percent of 18-29-year-olds use Facebook, according to a Pew Research Center study.

It will also list a variety of active apps and websites if you have recently logged into them using Facebook. If private companies are scraping photos and combining them with personal info in order to make judgements about people - are you a terrorist, or how likely are you to be a shoplifter or anything in between - then it exposes everyone to the risk of being misidentified, or correctly identified and being misjudged. When you contemplate face recognition that's everywhere, we have to think about what that's going to mean for us. "By using facial recognition", she wrote.

Facebook
Image Courtesy of The Herald of Finance

Lawyers for the plaintiffs could not immediately be reached for comment.

A federal judge on Monday said Facebook must face a potentially multi-billion dollar class-action lawsuit from a group of IL users who say the company violated a state law that restricts facial recognition software.

Facebook only uses its face-scanning tech in certain countries.

"There is a worldwide movement to delete Facebook, not just due to their moves in the Philippines, but because also of privacy concerns", he added.

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