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Facial Recognition Data Erased By Facebook

Facial Recognition Data Erased By Facebook

The Irish Data Protection Commission confirmed that the social media giant, Facebook will completely erase the facial recognition templates. The social network had promised to do so by October 15.

Facebook recently launched its facial recognition feature which was using the photograph tagging technique. This feature of Facebook was reportedly blocked by the Irish Data Protection Committee. The committee blacklisted the photo tagging feature in Europe after going through the Facebook’s privacy policy. The committee then issued a notice to Facebook, under which the company had to cooperate with the committee to adhere to regulations in the European Union. These privacy regulations are being followed since 2011 and thus, Facebook had to give in.

There are confirmations from the Data Protection Commissioner in Ireland that the source code and the process used by the social network to erase the data have been monitored closely. And the committee is satisfied with the process used by the company to dissolve the templates. Also, the commissioner is happy that the company was very cooperative and deleted the templates as per the commitment.

The same has been confirmed by the German privacy regulator and the case against Facebook has been closed officially.

Facebook had to adhere to the Irish Data Commission as the European headquarter of the social network is situated in Ireland. And thus the company had to adhere to the strict privacy laws under their rulebook.

The social network has finally shut the facial recognition features for all the new users who sign up in the European Union and the data of previous users who used the photo tagging feature has also been wiped out as it violated the privacy laws of Ireland.

The facial recognition feature of Facebook was in close relationship with Face.com. The data on the feature was used for recommending new friends. The Facebook photographs could then be tagged by the users. The facial data which was being collected by the feature was without the consent of the users and thus, the privacy violation act was levied on the company. Also, the 24 year old young law student, Max Schrems had a huge role in bringing this to the notice of the concerned authorities. Max runs an activist organization, ‘Europe V. Facebook.’ Though, the feature has been activated in United States and there are no changes made in the feature.

This bold move by Facebook has raised the concerns of several politicians from Capitol Hill and as per the sources the politicians are getting an uneasy feeling due to the photograph tagging feature by Facebook. Though, unlike Europe, there are no legal violations filed against the network in States and the users can freely enjoy the photo tagging from Facebook.

About The Author

Marc Lafleur is a freelance writer from Melbourne Australia. His work has been published on many blogs and websites. He is passionate about how social media platforms manage and improve their security breaches. You can read information that he gathered on this subject by clicking here.

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