Facebook announces shut down of its Face Recognition system and that’s because it suddenly cares about users’ privacy. The parent company Meta mentions in an official blogpost that FB’s most controversial Face Recognition system will shut down in the upcoming weeks. The feature is shutting “as part of a company-wide move to limit the use of facial recognition in our products,” the blogpost states. Also Read - Top 5 WhatsApp features expected to roll out soon
The shut down will impact more than a billion users in different ways. Users who have opted for the setting will no longer be automatically recognized in photos and videos. Surprisingly, the tech giant also announced to delete the facial recognition template used to identify users from the system. Also Read - WhatsApp could soon release Message Reactions, Reaction Notifications features soon
Meta states that “more than a third of Facebook’s daily active users have opted in to our Face Recognition setting and are able to be recognized, and its removal will result in the deletion of more than a billion people’s individual facial recognition templates.” Also Read - Here's how you can save yourself from intruders spying on you on Instagram
What changes for FB users
–As a part of the Facial Recognition system, Facebook allowed users to get notified automatically when someone post their photos and videos. FB also provided recommendations for who to tag in photos. These features will be removed with Face Recognition system shutting down in the weeks to come.
–Facebook will no longer be able to automatically recognize when a user’s face appears in Memories, photos or videos.
–Users will no longer be able to turn on face recognition for suggested tagging or even see a suggested tag with their name in photos and videos they may appear in. FB users will now need to manually tag their friends in photos.
–The shutting of Facial recognition system will impact Automatic Alt Text (AAT), which is a technology used to create image descriptions for people who are blind or visually impaired. “After the change, AAT will still be able to recognize how many people are in a photo, but will no longer attempt to identify who each person is using facial recognition. Otherwise, AAT will continue to function normally, and we’ll work closely with the blind and visually impaired community on technologies to continually improve AAT,” the blogpost explained.
–For users who have opted into the Face Recognition setting, the template used to identify their face will be deleted from the system. However, users who have the face recognition setting turned off, there will be no change at all.
Why is FB shutting Facial recognition system
After offering the setting for several years, Meta now states that Facial Recognition system has its own set of pros and cons. In some instances, the Facial Recognition system helped users verify their identity and also prevent fraud and impersonation. In others, the system compromised users’ privacy and security. “There are many concerns about the place of facial recognition technology in society, and regulators are still in the process of providing a clear set of rules governing its use,” the company states.
“Ending the use of our existing Face Recognition system means the services it enables will be removed over the coming weeks, as will the setting allowing people to opt into the system,” the blogpost clarifies.