Legislator Roundtable: Facial Recognition

We were delighted to host our latest legislator roundtable today, this time focusing on the regulation of facial recognition technologies. We were grateful for contributions from both sides of the Atlantic and were joined by legislators from Canada, Chile, Germany, Portugal, Romania, the European Parliament and the UK, alongside multiple colleagues from the USA.

So many important ideas were raised from the potential for an FDA-style regulatory agency to the possibility of outright bans on these technologies and the broader need to ensure that government bodies addressing these topics are sufficiently coordinated.

Legislators were keen to discuss the inaccuracies and biases within these technologies and the discrimination that can result from this in arenas from predictive policing to recruitment to uses within government administration.

Concerns were also raised about what would happen if these technologies were 100% accurate: would achieving this require disproportionate surveillance of minority groups and would this lead to unjustifiable breaches of privacy?

The potential contribution of facial recognition to efficient systems was also discussed, and various views raised on how regulation can help governments reach a point where these systems can be fairly deployed.

Hearing the varied insights of legislators on this topic was invaluable and legislators were keen to learn from one another on international strategies for regulating technology.

Participants: Canada, Chile, European Parliament, Germany, Portugal, Romania, UK, USA.

Speakers: Carly Kind (Ada Lovelace Institute), Professor Learned-Miller (Co-author: Facial Recognition Technologies in the Wild: A Call for a Federal Office).