People calling for incredibly creepy ‘facial recognition search engine’ website to be banned
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People have spoken out against facial recognition search engines which scour the internet and can identify you with just a picture.
Not every development in technology is welcomed as a good thing, and one service the internet can provide which some are finding creepy is the facial recognition search engine.
Basically, you put a picture of someone into the engine and it'll bring up all of the other images it can find on the internet of who it thinks that person is using an AI algorithm.
While some might find it a useful tool for catching out scammers there are plenty who have expressed concerns at this development in technology and what it means for their privacy.
There have been concerns before with a site called PimEyes, which used a facial recognition search engine to find all other images of a person online, with someone calling it 'the most disturbing AI website on the internet.
These sites aren't perfect, your humble author once gave PimEyes a go and while the first two pictures it provided were indeed yours truly there were six more total strangers who looked a bit like me.
Now people have expressed concern about another one, this time called FaceCheck.ID, which lets you do pretty much the same thing by giving them a picture of the person you want to find.
The site claims it has over 571 million faces to choose from and some are worried what people might use it for, with one sharing a screenshot of the site's homepage saying 'oh boy' and another sarcastically quipping 'what could possibly go wrong'.
However, others on social media have praised the site, saying they've used it to catch out catfishers and scammers.
Trying to put a person's picture into the site makes you agree to some terms and conditions, including agreeing not to stalk, harass, blackmail or confront a person, so it seems like they know what people could use their website for.
I gave this one a go as well and it coughed up one picture it was (accurately) confident was me and then a whole host of others the site's rating said it reckoned weren't me but decided to show anyway.
According to the site's privacy information you can get yourself taken off their search engine by giving them a photo of yourself and seeing what pictures they can access of you online.
You can them select pictures which won't show up for users of the search engine trying to look for you, though you will need to send them either ID as proof it's really you or if you can't send them ID a selfie with you touching your chin will do.
Pictures of you which the search engine can access and might show to other users are then taken down immediately, according to FaceCheck.ID.
404media reported that there are accounts 'doxing ordinary and otherwise anonymous people' using facial recognition software, with these accounts sometimes being able to find out exactly who a person is just by running an image of their face through easily accessible software.
When you upload pictures of yourself to the internet you're not signing up to people being able to track down every detail about your life, hence a lot of people's worries about this technology.