Remember when we’ve told you that San Francisco might become the first city to ban facial recognition? Well, it happened. Legislators in San Francisco have decided that banning the use of facial recognition is a good idea for their city.
Therefore, local agencies like transport authority or law enforcement will not be allowed to use this technology in their work process. Moreover, the purchase of new surveillance technology is to be approved first by the city administrator.
People who voted against the facial recognition technology said it is unreliable, and quite intrusive to individual privacy, but also stressed that the systems have errors, specifically when identifying people with darker skin.
“With this vote, San Francisco has declared that face surveillance technology is incompatible with a healthy democracy and that residents deserve a voice in decisions about high-tech surveillance,” said Matt Cagle from the American Civil Liberties Union in Northern California.
“We applaud the city for listening to the community and leading the way forward with this crucial legislation. Other cities should take note and set up similar safeguards to protect people’s safety and civil rights.”
Anyway, the new legislation won’t be applied to security measures at San Francisco’s airport or seaport.
There were a few campaigners that fought for the new measures not to be applied, but with no success.
Whether this ban will endanger people’s safety or hinder efforts to fight crime, remains to be seen.