Mardi, Amazone ( said he would expand his ban on the use of the technology by police “until further notice.” The decision was first reported by Reuters. )
In June 2020, Amazon halted sales of Rekognition to law enforcement agencies. The move came during large-scale protests against police violence in the United States, which began with the death of George Floyd after a Minneapolis policeman knelt by his neck during an arrest.
Amazon’s initial move followed a letter from IBM ( to US lawmakers, who said the computer giant would no longer offer facial recognition services and condemned the use of facial recognition “for mass surveillance, racial profiling [or] violations of fundamental human rights and freedoms. ” )
Almost 12 months later, no federal regulations have been adopted. There are a handful of US state laws restricting the use of facial recognition systems and citywide bans. These rules tend to target how government and businesses might use this software, not individuals.
In a statement Tuesday, the American Civil Liberties Union – which is one of several civil rights groups that has vehemently criticized Amazon’s recognition technology in the past and called on the company to stop sell it to government groups – said she was happy to see the ban. extended indefinitely.
“Now, Biden’s administration and legislatures across the country must further protect communities from the dangers of this technology by ending its use by law enforcement, regardless of which company sells it.” Nathan Freed Wessler, ACLU’s deputy speech director, Privacy and Technology Project, said in a statement.
Clearview AI is perhaps the best known of the other companies that sell facial recognition technology. This company has built a huge stash of faces with images of people from social media and is limiting its use to law enforcement (Clearview said it has hundreds of those customers).
CNN’s Brian Fung contributed to this report.