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San Francisco Is Considering Banning Facial Recognition Technology

California City Wants To Ban Technology With Facial Recognition San Francisco, home of pioneering tech companies like Facebook, might also become one of the first cities to ban face-recognition...

California City Wants To Ban Technology With Facial Recognition

San Francisco, home of pioneering tech companies like Facebook, might also become one of the first cities to ban face-recognition technology.

Law enforcement is now implementing the technology, using screenshots from security footage and running the images through a database of faces. San Francisco lawmakers say the practice invades people’s privacy and is racially biased. The city’s Board of Supervisors plans to vote on banning the government from using face recognition technology on Tuesday.

“A proposed ban is part of a broader anti-surveillance ordinance that the city’s Board of Supervisors is expected to approve on Tuesday,” CNN reports. “If passed — a majority of the board’s 11 supervisors have expressed support for it — it will make San Francisco the first city in the United States to outlaw the use of such technology by the police and other government departments. The ordinance could also spur other local governments to take similar action.”

“We all support good policing but none of us want to live in a police state,” San Francisco Supervisor Aaron Peskin told CNN. Peskin also called the technology “fundamentally invasive.”

Critics of face-recognition technology question its accuracy, as well as the potential for government abuses and mistaken identity. The San Francisco Police Department does not use face-recognition technology in its investigations but did test it out from 2013 to 2017.

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