San Francisco bans the use of facial recognition

San Francisco has become the first city in the United States to ban the use of facial recognition, because of its role in infringing on people’s privacy and liberty.

The emerging technology will not be allowed to be used by local agencies, such as the city’s transport authority, or law enforcement, with voters saying that the technology, as it exists today, is unreliable and error prone, particularly when dealing with women or people with darker skin.

However opponents of the measure said it will put people’s safety at risk and hinder efforts to fight crime.

The move means that any plans to buy any kind of new surveillance technology must now be approved by city administrators. However, the new rules will not apply to security measures at San Francisco’s airport or sea port, as they are run by federal, not local, agencies.


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