Now Reading
IBM to no longer develop facial recognition technology

IBM to no longer develop facial recognition technology

“We believe now is the time to begin a national dialogue on whether and how facial recognition technology should be employed by domestic law enforcement agencies”

In a letter to the US Congress, IBM’s CEO Arvind Krishna has said that his company would stop developing all research related to facial recognition technology.

“IBM firmly opposes and will not condone uses of any technology, including facial recognition technology offered by other vendors, for mass surveillance, racial profiling, violations of basic human rights and freedoms, or any purpose which is not consistent with our values and Principles of Trust and Transparency. We believe now is the time to begin a national dialogue on whether and how facial recognition technology should be employed by domestic law enforcement agencies,” wrote Krishna in his letter.

It is worth noting that facial recognition programmes have improved significantly over the past decade thanks to advancements made in artificial intelligence, but  it has been proven to still suffers from a bias against factor such as age, race, which may make it unreliable for use by law enforcement agencies and result in violations of civil rights.

In 2018, research revealed the bias of many commercial facial recognition systems – including that of IBM – which led to public criticism of these algorithms and subsequent efforts to correct the bias.

In December 2019, a study from the National Institute of Standards and Technology found “empirical evidence for the existence of a wide range of accuracy across demographic differences in the majority of the current face recognition algorithms that were evaluated.”

Amazon’s Rekognition programme has also been criticised for incorrectly matching 28 members of Congress to faces picked from 25,000 public photos. It is worth noting that Amazon’s facial recognition software has been used by law enforcement authorities.

Apart from Amazon, Facebook too was fined $550m last January to settle a class action lawsuit over its illegal use of facial recognition technology .

IBM has tried to help with the problem of bias in facial recognition software, releasing a public data set in 2018 designed to help reduce bias as part of the training data for the facial recognition model.

However, IBM was criticised after it was found that it used nearly a million images from Flickr without the owners ’approval – although these images were shared under a Creative Commons license.

This story originally appeared on MENA Tech 

You might also like

© 2020 MOTIVATE MEDIA GROUP. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Scroll To Top