IBM ends all facial recognition work as CEO calls out bias and inequality – TipsClear

IBM CEO Arvind Krishna announced today that the company will no longer sell facial recognition services, asking for a “national dialogue” on whether it should be used. He also supported for a new bill aimed at reducing police violence and increasing accountability.

In a letter reported by CNBC, written in support of the Justice Act introduced today, Krishna spoke of the company’s exit from the controversial business of face recognition as a service.

IBM is strongly opposed to any technology and for mass surveillance, racial profiling, basic human rights and freedom violations or for any purpose, including facial recognition technology offered by other vendors, which our values And shall not use, does not conform to the principles of trust. And transparency. We believe that now is the time to start a national dialogue on whether facial recognition technology should be employed by domestic law enforcement agencies.

This careful approach to developing and deploying technology is not a new one: IBM emphasized this last year with a new database of facial data that was more diverse than anything available at the time. After all, like any program, these systems are only as good as the information you feed into them.

However, facial recognition does not appear to make the company making much money, if any. To be fair, the technology is actually in its infancy and there are some applications where an enterprise vendor like IBM makes sense. Amazon’s controversial Rekognition service, while it has been tested by quite a few law enforcement entities, is not well thought out in this area. It would not give IBM much benefit to try to compete with a product that is just barely good to use.

Krishna’s letter also states that “Al system vendors and users have a shared responsibility to ensure that Al is tested for bias, particularly when used in law enforcement, and Such bias tests are audited and reported. ” This is a parting shot for those in the field, most notably Amazon, who have been called out for the poor quality of facial recognition systems, but have not been stopped in the market.

Krishna writes the bill in support of dozens of co-sponsors in the House and Senate, and the Police Department and they address a wide variety of issues faced by the police. Among other things, it expands the requirements for body cameras, but limits the use of facial recognition in relation to them. It will provide grants for hardware, but only if they are publicly developed and listed under the protocol.

The ACLU, in a statement issued in relation to the bill, agreed with its approach: “We need to invest in technologies that can help eliminate the digital divide, not technologies that would create a monitoring infrastructure Are those that increase policing abuse and structural racism. “

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