Citing growing societal concerns about the use of such technologies, Facebook Inc announced on Tuesday it is shutting down its facial recognition system, Reuters reported.
“Regulators are still in the process of providing a clear set of rules governing its use,” Jerome Pesenti, vice president of artificial intelligence at Facebook, wrote in a blog post, quoted by Reuters. “Amid this ongoing uncertainty, we believe that limiting the use of facial recognition to a narrow set of use cases is appropriate.”
Face recognition technology could compromise privacy, target marginalized groups, and normalize intrusive surveillance, according to critics.
In addition to IBM, Microsoft Corp and Amazon.com Inc have permanently ended sales of facial recognition products to police.
The news also comes as Facebook has been under intense scrutiny from regulators and lawmakers due to its platform abuses and user safety.
Last week, Meta Platforms Inc rebranded itself Meta Platforms Inc. More than one-third of Facebook’s daily active users opted into the face recognition setting on the social media site, and the change will delete the “facial recognition templates” of more than 1 billion people.
A Facebook spokesperson said the removal will be completed by December.