EU reconsiders adopting AI in facial recognition technology in public places

The European Union has scrapped the likelihood of a ban on facial recognition technology in public spaces.

In 2019, in a draft the European Commission had proposed the idea of a moratorium of up to five years to give the EU time to work on ways to prevent abuses of this technology.

The pros and cons of artificial intelligence in facial recognition has sparked a global debate on the technology that is widely used by law enforcement agencies and abused by authoritarian regimes for mass surveillance and for discriminatory purposes.

According to critics, the technology can breach data privacy rules and infringe on people’s fundamental rights.

The revised proposal, part of a package of measures the EC aims to address while looking at AI, could still be tweaked since it is currently asking for feedback before it presents its plan on February 19.

The proposed AI rules would cover so-called high risk sectors such as healthcare and transport.

Earlier this month, the U.S. government unveiled its own AI regulatory guidelines aimed at limiting authorities’ overreach and urged Europe to mirror its stance and avoid aggressive approaches.

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