12.5 C
New York
Tuesday, October 27, 2020
Home News Portland bans private and public use of facial recognition tech

Portland bans private and public use of facial recognition tech

Portland, Oregon has become the first city to declare facial recognition tech unlawful. The city’s legislators have unanimously voted to pass a sweeping new law that bans both the private and public use of facial recognition.

While other cities such as Oakland, San Francisco, and Boston have already prohibited government agencies from employing facial surveillance technology, Portland is the first that has outlawed its private use.

“Portlanders should never be in fear of having their right of privacy be exploited by either their government or by a private institution,” said Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler (via OneZero) during the hearing. “All Portlanders and frankly all people are entitled to a city government that will not use technology with a demonstrated racial and gender bias which endangers personal privacy.”

The city’s council has established the new legislature as two ordinances. One of them comes into effect immediately and bans facial recognition tech inside city bureaus including law enforcement departments. Bureau heads have also been asked to submit a complete assessment of their facial recognition usage within 90 days.

The second one goes live next year in January and prohibits privately owned places accessible to the public, such as stores, banks, Airbnb rentals, entertainment establishments, restaurants, and more from using facial recognition technologies.

What’s more, the new legislation enables Portland citizens with the right to sue for the unlawful use of facial recognition by non-compliant private entities. This part especially has said to have been opposed heavily by business groups including Amazon that reportedly spent $24,000 lobbying the city’s council commissioners against the ban.

Facial recognition tech has been repeatedly criticized and found to have a race bias — leading to wrongful arrests and convictions. “Technology should not amplify existing bias and perpetuate racism. It can and should be a tool to help solve these social ills,” stated Portland City Council Commissioner Chloe Eudaly at the hearing.

Several tech companies including IBM and Microsoft have withdrawn their facial recognition research and products. In June earlier this year, Microsoft announced it would not sell its facial recognition surveillance software to law enforcement. With this legislation, Portland sets a much-needed precedent for the rest of the states but it remains to be seen whether any more cities follow.

Latest

List of all Bugnax species in Bugsnax on PS5

They're part bug, part snack, and 100% delicious (ok, maybe not that last part).Curious about the creatures you have to

Samsung may ditch the charger and earphones with the Galaxy S21

Samsung could follow Apple's move and get rid of the charger and earphones the Galaxy S21.What you need to knowIt

Review: The CalDigit TS3 Plus is the best docking station for laptop owners

Go from no ports to all-the-ports with a single cable.As laptops continue to get thinner and lighter, that means sacrifices

How to watch Marseille vs Man City: Live stream Champions League football

The quest for European glory continues tonight as matchday two of the Champions League group stage takes place including this