EPIC, Coalition Call for Global Ban on Biometric Recognition Technologies
June 7, 2021
In an open letter, EPIC and a coalition of more than 175 civil society organizations, activists, technologists, and other experts called "for an outright ban on uses of facial recognition and remote biometric recognition technologies that enable mass surveillance and discriminatory targeted surveillance." The letter urges lawmakers around the world to stop public investment in facial recognition, prohibit government and private use of facial recognition in public spaces, and mandate disclosure and reparations to individuals monitored or harmed by biometric mass surveillance systems. The letter identifies one-to-many facial recognition identification (comparing an image to a gallery of identified images) as inherently dangerous to the public because the databases of images enable discriminatory targeted surveillance and the technology itself enables comprehensive public surveillance. EPIC began pushing for a ban in 2019 with the launch of the Ban Face Surveillance campaign and recently joined over 40 other organizations to call for a ban on U.S. law enforcement's use of facial recognition technology.