Amazon extends stop on supply of facial recognition software to US police

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Amazon will not supply facial recognition software to US police indefinitely. Last year, the company put in place a one-year supply freeze, but it is extending that deadline without specifying an end date.

Amazon has told Reuters no reason to extend the delivery freeze of Rekognition, its facial recognition technology, to the United States police. In June last year, the company put that delivery on hold for a year, explaining that the company wanted stricter regulations for the use of facial recognition. Amazon then expressed the hope that the US Congress would soon come up with better regulation for the ethical use of facial recognition technology. Those regulations do not yet exist.

The American civil rights organization ACLU is elated that Amazon Rekognition is no longer delivering. The organization makes the link with criticism last year of the actions of the American police at demonstrations after the death of George Floyd. Facial recognition technology harms the black community in the US, according to the ACLU and has already led to wrongful arrests and charges. The ACLU wants President Biden’s administration to end the use of facial recognition by police altogether, no matter which company it originates from.

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