• Oct 11, 2019
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

The Hong Kong protests reveal how our faces are becoming a key battleground for privacy and freedom

The protests in Hong Kong are much in the news. But for readers of this blog, there’s a particular reason why they are of interest. Mainland China is well known for its advanced and pervasive surveillance systems, and Hong Kong naturally shares many of its approaches. Protesting in the region therefore requires new skills in … Continue reading “The Hong Kong protests reveal how our faces are becoming a key battleground for privacy and freedom”

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  • Aug 14, 2019
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

Arsenic in the water of democracy: UK police, politicians and privacy activists clash over facial recognition deployments

Last week’s post looked at the increasing number of moves to rein in, or even ban, the use of facial recognition technologies in the US. Another country at the forefront of exploring the legal, social and ethical issues raised by the technology is the UK. Problems with the use of facial recognition technologies by the … Continue reading “Arsenic in the water of democracy: UK police, politicians and privacy activists clash over facial recognition deployments”

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  • Aug 3, 2019
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

Facial recognition concerns go mainstream in the US, as cities and companies bring in bans

Recently, FaceApp was much in the headlines. It allows users to submit photos of faces and modify them in interesting ways – making peple look older, or younger, or changing their expression. It was undoubtedly a cool use of AI technology. But what was most interesting about the episode is how quickly people realized that … Continue reading “Facial recognition concerns go mainstream in the US, as cities and companies bring in bans”

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Hard to prove harm: Google wins lawsuit over facial recognition

As new privacy laws attempt to address the different ways that companies collect, store and use biometric data, it’s also important to keep an eye on how the courts are interpreting and applying legislation. In a recent court case, a federal judge ruled against a claim that Google had violated Illinois privacy laws by using … Continue reading “Hard to prove harm: Google wins lawsuit over facial recognition”

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  • Jan 5, 2019
  • Glyn Moody
  • News, Privacy, Security,

What happens to identity and privacy when every biometric can be faked?

Identity and privacy are closely bound up. Typically, you use proof of your identity to access your private information. Alongside traditional approaches like passwords and hardware tokens, biometrics are increasingly employed to authenticate people, notably with smartphones, many of which now come with fingerprint sensors and facial recognition built in as standard. As well as … Continue reading “What happens to identity and privacy when every biometric can be faked?”

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  • Dec 22, 2018
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

As facial recognition systems continue to spread, so do concerns about their deployment

Facial recognition is hardly new – Privacy News Online has been writing about the topic for years now. But it is becoming more and more the norm, as some recent news shows. For example, the following story from Rolling Stone: Taylor Swift fans mesmerized by rehearsal clips on a kiosk at her May 18th Rose … Continue reading “As facial recognition systems continue to spread, so do concerns about their deployment”

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  • Nov 24, 2018
  • Jayson Q.
  • General Privacy and Security, Online Activity, Tutorials,

Why a passcode is better than biometric access

TL/DR: Don’t use your fingerprintsor facial recognition as access passwords. Biometric access is not secure. Fingerprints or facial recognition as passwords are not legally protected. You can’t change your fingerprints or face but a password should always be changeable. More and more technology is being released with the addition of a biometric scanners; Apple’s iPhone feature biometric … Continue reading “Why a passcode is better than biometric access”

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  • Nov 10, 2018
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

AI-based lie detection system will screen travellers to EU for ‘biomarkers of deceit’

As the borders between nations have become increasingly sensitive from a political point of view, so the threats to privacy there have grown. Privacy News Online has already reported on the use of AI-based facial recognition systems as a way of tightening border controls. As software improves, and hardware becomes faster and cheaper, it’s likely … Continue reading “AI-based lie detection system will screen travellers to EU for ‘biomarkers of deceit’”

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  • Aug 11, 2018
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

US politicians discover personally the pitfalls of facial recognition: is it time to ban it completely?

For all the theoretical concerns about the limitations of facial recognition systems, there’s nothing like personal experience to hammer the point home. That was confirmed recently when the ACLU ran an interesting experiment using Amazon’s cloud-based Rekognition system, which Privacy News Online discussed a couple of months back: Using Rekognition, we built a face database … Continue reading “US politicians discover personally the pitfalls of facial recognition: is it time to ban it completely?”

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  • Jul 21, 2018
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

Should Facial Recognition Technologies Be Regulated by the Government? Microsoft Says ‘Yes’

Facial recognition technology represents one of the most serious threats to privacy. That’s for two principal reasons. Perhaps the most important is that it is almost impossible to change our faces: serious plastic surgery apart, there are few effective techniques to disguise our bodily appearance. Masks may hide our features, but are too cumbersome – … Continue reading “Should Facial Recognition Technologies Be Regulated by the Government? Microsoft Says ‘Yes’”

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