A coalition of human rights organisations is launching a petition at the Brussels Parliament to demand a ban on facial recognition technology in public spaces. The groups are deeply concerned that its legalisation and implementation would threaten fundamental liberties, particularly those of minority populations.
Specifically, this petition takes issue with using such technology for identification purposes, thereby allowing people to be singled out in a crowd based on biometric data stored in databases (like measuring distance between eyes and nose).
Supporters of this cause are appalled by BriefCam – an Israeli company selling software that can detect, trace and collect information from moving objects – which also offers facial recognition. Despite its illegality in Belgium, the police and governments still strive to make use of it, compromising privacy rights, the right to anonymity, freedom of movement, association and assembly, as well as the right not to be discriminated against.