Facial recognition test halted after “unreasonably intrusive” complaint

Facial recognition test halted after 'unreasonable trespass' claims

Australian company halts facial recognition testing over privacy concerns

Australia’s second-largest home appliance store chain said on Tuesday it was halting testing of facial recognition technology in stores after a consumer group turned it over to a privacy regulator. to take action.

The group, CHOICE, told the Australian Office of the Information Commissioner (OAIC), using technology from The Good Guys, owned by JB Hi-Fi Ltd, was “unreasonably intrusive” and potentially potential violation of privacy laws.

“The Good Guys … will suspend testing of an upgraded security system with optional facial recognition technology underway at two of its Melbourne stores,” a JB Hi-Fi spokesperson said. said in an email.

The company takes the security of personal information very seriously and remains confident that it has complied with the relevant laws, but has decided to “pause the test at this time to wait for OAIC’s clarification on the use of this technology.” “, the company added.

The Good Guys are named in the complaint along with Bunnings, Australia’s largest home improvement chain, and the domestic version of big box retailer Kmart, both owned by Wesfarmers Ltd, with gross revenue. around A$25 billion annually across 800 stores.

Bunnings did not immediately comment on The Good Guys’ move.

A day earlier, when CHOICE filed a complaint, Bunnings said it was only using the technology for security after its team increased the number of “challenging interactions” and accused CHOICE of being an “unfriendly feature.” exactly”.

Good Guys says it also only uses the technology to review theft incidents and ensure the safety and well-being of its customers and teams.

Kmart did not respond to email inquiries about the complaint.

The OAIC said it is reviewing the complaint.

Last year, the regulator ordered Australian chain 7-Eleven to destroy “traces” collected at 700 iPad convenience stores set up to conduct customer surveys.

It also ordered US software developer Clearview AI, which collects images from social media sites to build personal profiles, to destroy data and prevent this activity in Australia.

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