According to information published by the Financial Times, the European Commission is considering new laws to clearly define the way facial recognition technology can be used in the European Union, and also to provide explicit rights to citizens over their private data. The new legislation will be used by companies but also by police and security forces.
The European GDPR legislation already bans the collection of sensitive biometric data which can later be used to precisely identify people. Although it is part of this category, facial recognition is part of a wider and controversial topic related to artificial intelligence and European lawmakers want to create a new “global standard” to regulate the use of artificial intelligence systems.
What is very interesting is that this is not the first initiative to restrict the use of the facial recognition technology in Europe. In 2016 Facebook had to exclude this technology from the Moments app created to facilitate the sharing of photo collections by friends on the Facebook social network.
What is certain is that in some conditions, the use of facial recognition technology is allowed and will continue to be allowed. Google has even announced a few days ago the face grouping technology in the Google Photos app.