Facial recognition has to be regulated to protect the public, says AI report

Facial recognition has to be regulated to protect the public, says AI report
Artificial intelligence has made major strides in the past few years, but those rapid advances are now raising some big ethical conundrums.

Chief among them is the way machine learning can identify people’s faces in photos and video footage with great accuracy. This might let you unlock your phone with a smile, but it also means that governments and big corporations have been given a powerful new surveillance tool.

A new report from the AINow Institute (large PDF), an influential think tank based in New York, has just identified facial recognition as a key challenge for society and policymakers.

The speed at which facial recognition has grown comes down to the rapid development of a type of machine learning known as deep learning . Deep learning uses large tangles of computations—very roughly analogous to the wiring in a biological brain—to recognize patterns in data. It is now able to carry out pattern recognition with jaw-dropping accuracy. 

The tasks that deep learning excels at include identifying objects, or indeed individual faces, in even poor-quality images and video. Companies have rushed to adopt such tools.
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