Last week, San Francisco, California became the first major city in the United States to ban the use of facial recognition technology by police and government agencies. But authorities – and even some civil society groups – contend that the technology could help fight crime and should not be banned completely. However, civil liberties organisations say such systems, if adopted widely, would compromise privacy and disproportionately target marginalised communities.

Such criticism has not prevented other governments in the world from promoting facial recognition networks in the name of security. Police departments across the UK have conducted street trials of facial recognition cameras, and the Chinese government has used the technology to track citizens and crackdown on the minority Uighur Muslim community.

So, is privacy the ultimate price for security?

In this episode, The Stream chats with civil liberties advocates and facial recognition specialists to explore the ethics of the technology and how it is being used around the globe.

On this episode of The Stream, we speak with:
Matt Cagle @matt_cagle
Technology and civil liberties attorney, ACLU of Northern California

Silkie Carlo @bbw1984
Director, Big Brother Watch

Lily Newman @lilyhnewman
Security reporter, WIRED

Read more:
Congress found something to agree on: facial recognition - Quartz
As surveillance culture grows, can we even hope to escape its reach? - The Guardian
China has a new facial recognition app — this time for pandas - Washington Post

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