Balancing privacy with the benefits of facial recognition

As a growing numbers of businesses and government agencies incorporate facial recognition into their operations, privacy concerns also soar. But responsible use can protect customers

New privacy challenges

Privacy concerns spring up each time advancements in facial recognition permeate the mainstream market; most recently, the Face ID technology available with the iPhone X generated a conversation about the risks of having a terminal hacked by means of something as basic as a misappropriated photo from Instagram. These concerns were eventually averted by developing more accurate technologies, but a proactive preoccupation with personal data safety clearly yields the best results.

On a bigger scale, entities that process data from facial recognition must be dedicated not just to securely managing the data, but also to only using it for its stated purpose. And since facial recognition needs a reference set in order to function, most privacy concerns begin with the nature of this reference set. It’s essential to create and store the set in an ethical manner, as well as to define appropriate responses to both matches and false matches.

Ethical use and consent

Responsible use and storage of data is what makes the difference – for example, you can set up a face recognition system for retail and know how long it takes customers to flow between two set points, at white times of day you can expect traffic peaks, as well as their ages and genders. But these benefits can be explored without using personally identifying information or storing captured images for more than a few hours. Essentially, the application of these advancements must be accessed by users as opt-in services, in a way that assures their explicit consent and an overall safe experience.

In addition to bringing experience and technical expertise, the VisageCloud team can help you strike the perfect balance between convenience, accuracy and privacy. And if your business is based in Europe, we’ll make sure that the implementation of facial recognition systems for your business is in compliance with the GDPR. Our technologies bring value to a very wide range of use cases, so contact us and find out what we can do for yours.

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