Facebook expands the use of its facial recognition software to alert users when their photos are published on the platform
Facebook is expanding the use of his software of Facial recognition to alert users when their photos are published on the platform, regardless of whether or not they were tagged in the published photo.
Facial recognition Facebook will be preset
By default, Facebook users in the United States will be registered to receive these notices related to facial recognition, unless they have previously deactivated a similar and more limited function, but users will still be able to deactivate facial recognition, based on what Facebook claims.
In addition, the company says it will implement new tools to alert users if someone else tries to impersonate them with a misleading photo on the profile.
Facebook facial recognition to avoid identity theft
Facebook has been using facial recognition technology since 2010 to detect faces in photos and look for recognizable patterns for identify individuals; Facebook has the ability to associate names to the faces thanks to the "tag" function, which people use to label themselves and their friends in images.
Recognition of people without human intervention
For years, the social media giant has offered suggestions about tag, giving users the possibility of tag faces in the uploaded photos, thus labeling the people it contains. Now Facebook is cutting off the human element from the process: if facial recognition software identifies you in a photo, it will come to you automatically notified: it is not necessary for the person who published the photo to approve a tag. This is true only for the photos you can see: if a stranger adds you in a photo and makes it visible only to their group of friends, you would not be notified, for example.
Facial recognition, two related features that Facebook is about to implement
"We want people to feel safe when they post their photos on Facebook, so we will soon start using facial recognition technology to let people know when someone else uploads their picture as a profile picture," he said. Joaquin Quionero Candela, the director of applied Facebook learning machine, writing in a blog post, and we're doing it to prevent people from impersonating others on Facebook. "
Image recognition to help the visually impaired
Facebook also uses facial recognition to describe photos to people with visual impairments, "even if people are not labeled," writes Candela.
Turn off facial recognition
Users will be able to disable all facial recognition features in their settings, under an option called "Face Recognition", with only two options: s or no. If you want to forgo visual recognition, choosing "no" will prevent Facebook from identifying your face, but will not prevent Facebook from searching for other people's faces in your photos.
Before the option becomes available, you can achieve the same result by disabling the tag suggestions in the Facebook settings.
Facial recognition not available in Europe
The new option not available in Canada and the European Union, specifies Facebook, without providing further explanation.
The regulatory authorities of both markets have previously raised concerns about the security and privacy implications of automatic face recognition.
Facial recognition and privacy
According to privacy laws and on Canada's personal information, all users must expressly allow their personal information to be used and security must be safeguarded.
In the EU, the "tag suggestion" function of Facebook was previously considered in violation of privacy laws because it was in opt-out mode, instead of opt-in, raising doubts about the effectiveness of informed consent.
More recently, the Facebook Moments app was distributed separately in the EU and Canada to exclude facial recognition technology in it.
Should we be afraid of facial recognition?
One might ask, "Should I be afraid of facial recognition technology?"
Facebook certainly assumes that you are asking yourself this question and that was the title of an article on the company blog published by deputy privacy manager Rob Sherman, who stated that facial recognition can be used both for harmless reasons such as ordering photo, both for "doubtful reasons"; he also acknowledged the "potential danger to racial prejudice".
Sherman wrote that Facebook has no "plan" to implement features that "tell outsiders who you are" and pointed out the possibility for users to disable the feature.
In fact, if you're wondering if you should be afraid, you might want to take a look at a more skeptical view of Facebook's privacy practices provided by the EPIC privacy control group.
The Office for Government Accountability also examined the issue of visual recognition technology in 2015 and found that "no federal law on the privacy expressly governs the commercial uses of the technology of Facial recognition".