Friday 11 September 2020 - 00:10

Portland Slaps Wide Ban on Use of Facial Recognition Tech

Story Code : 885515
Portland Slaps Wide Ban on Use of Facial Recognition Tech
Under the new rules, city bodies, including the Portland police, will not be allowed to use the technology, which identifies individuals by their faces using photos or footage.

Crucially, the ban will also apply to private enterprises working with the public, such as shops and restaurants.

The new rules, approved unanimously by the city council, still allow using the technology in private locations not meant for the general public, such as one's own residence.

The city's Mayor Ted Wheeler – who had to move apartments because of the threat of rioters – said the technology prompted a number of concerns, including that it could be used against those engaging in protests.

"Technology exists to make our lives easier, not for public and private entities to use as a weapon against the very citizens they serve and accommodate," he said, as cited by CNN.

Portland has been rocked by unrest, frequently escalating into riots, for more than 100 nights, with police arresting dozens of protesters and rioters.

This, along with the perceived lack of response on behalf of the authorities, landed the city on the list of locations US President Donald Trump has earmarked for possible federal funding slashes.