Germany: Facebook Must Destroy Facial Recognition Database – 21 August 2012

Says opt-out mechanism violates European Union law.

German data protection officials today accused Facebook of “illegally compiling a vast photo database of users without their consent” and demanded that the social network destroy its archive of files based on facial recognition technology, the New York Times reported.

Facebook says that it uses face recognition software to match users’ photos to others and suggest friends to tag in those photos. A user can prevent friends from seeing tag suggestions when they upload photos that look like that user. But this requires opting out through Facebook privacy settings, which Germany notes is a violation of European law.

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