Privacy

Your PC may be safe from tracking, but is your face?

facial recognition tracking subway

Your PC may be safe from tracking, but is your face?

Up until recently you could go out in public in a city you’ve never visited before with the expectation that nobody would know who you are.  Unfortunately, due to facial recognition technology, your ability to be anonymous in crowds may soon be a thing of the past.

Russian photographer Yegor Tsvetkov recently presented a project online he calls “YOUR FACE IS BIG DATA” that showed how he was able to easily find out the name and details of random people sitting across from him on the subway. Below is one example photo from his project.

On the left is a random person Yegor photographed on the subway and on the right was the social media account photo Yegor found from a facial recognition database.

Yegor used facial recognition technology from a Russian search company called N-Tech.Lab to find intimate details about people sitting near him on the subway just by taking a photo of their face with his mobile phone.  The N-Tech.Lab search could match the faces of most people Yegor photographed by using their public social media account details.

Unfortunately GlassWire can’t do much to protect your face from being put in a massive facial recognition database, but there are some things you can do on your own to help protect your privacy.

First set all your social media accounts to private.  Lifehacker has a great guide to help you manage your Facebook privacy while Tom’s Guide has a Twitter privacy guide.  Don’t forget about your Linkedin privacy settings.

Other things you can do is reach out to your government representatives and ask that there be rules put on facial recognition technology.  The EU has already taken action in the past against Facebook and US states Texas and Illinois already have laws in place.

Also, always think twice before posting photos/names of friends, family, and children online.  They may not want their photo associated with their name so it’s permanently part of a future massive facial recognition database.

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