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August 16, 2012

Germany Going After Facebook Again For Facial Recognition Technology

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Facebook Facial RecognitionFacebook’s use of facial recognition is once again coming under the watchful eye of Germany’s lawmakers. Officials this week launched a new probe into the social networks use of photo collecting based on its technology. Lawmakers are concerned that Facebook is taking photos without user consent.

Lawmakers in June launched a similar probe at which timedata protection commissioner Johannes Casper was suspended for offering Facebook more time to update its policies. Facebook since Casper’s threat has not updated its practices. Casper has now re-opened the investigation. If Facebook is found to have illegally collected photos via face-recognition software without a users consent it could face millions of dollars in fines.

Facebook in the meantime spoke withMashableand said of its practices:

We believe that the photo tag suggest feature on Facebook is fully compliant with EU data protection laws.During our continuous dialogue with our supervisory authority in Europe, the Office of the Irish Data Protection Commissioner, we agreed to develop a best practice solution to notify people on Facebook about photo tag suggest.

Facebook rolled out the facial recognition program to all users, forcing them to opt-out rather than to opt-in to the new software option.

Surely Facebook’s acquisition of facial recognition software company Face.com in June 2012 didn’t help their now re-opened case in Germany.

Does Facebook’s facial recognition software freak you out?

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