The EU is facing a backlash over new AI rules that allow for limited use of facial recognition by authorities -- with opponents warning the carveouts could usher in a new age of biometric surveillance. From a report: A coalition of digital rights and consumer protection groups across the globe, including Latin America, Africa and Asia are calling for a global ban on biometric recognition technologies that enable mass and discriminatory surveillance by both governments and corporations. In an open letter, 170 signatories in 55 countries argue that the use of technologies like facial recognition in public places goes against human rights and civil liberties. "It shows that organizations, groups, people, activists, technologists around the world who are concerned with human rights, agree to this call," said Daniel Leufer of U.S. digital rights group Access Now, which co-authored the letter. The use of facial recognition technology is becoming widespread. But along with everyday applications like unlocking phones, it's increasingly being used by governments and companies to surveil people, whether by law enforcement to scan public places for criminals or by grocery stores claiming to use it to catch thieves. The letter is in part a response to the EU's AI bill that restricts the practice, but does not prohibit it outright.
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