Meta is further backing away from facial recognition. The company has announced it’s shutting down the Face Recognition system on Facebook in the “coming weeks.” You’ll no longer be automatically recognized in photos if you opted in to the feature, and the Facebook team will delete over a billion facial recognition templates. Automatic Alt Text’s descriptions for the visually impaired will also stop naming people detected in photos.
The company said it made the decision following “growing concerns” about the broader use of facial recognition, including “uncertainty” about regulation of the technology. While Meta believed face recognition could still be helpful in some situations, such as gaining access to a locked account, it felt a “narrower,” more privacy-oriented approach was a better fit than the broader outgoing strategy. On-device recognition wouldn’t require sharing data with outside servers, for example.
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