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Feds schedule eight public meetings to examine facial recognition and privacy

As facial recognition technology moves into the commercial marketplace, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) has laid out a schedule of public meetings in which facial recognition stakeholders will be asked to develop a “legally enforceable code of conduct” that will protect personal privacy in this emerging arena.

A series of eight meetings are scheduled to take place in Washington, DC, aimed at developing a “Consumer Data Privacy Code of Conduct,” says a notice issued in the Federal Register on December 6 by the NTIA. The first of these meetings will be held on February 6, 2014, from 1:00 to 5:00 pm, in the boardroom of the American Institute of Architects at 1735 New York Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20006.

Seven subsequent meetings will take place at the same time and place, on February 25, March 25, April 8, April 29, May 20, June 3 and June 24.

“The objective of the February 6, 2014 meeting is to convene a factual, stakeholder-driven dialogue regarding the technical capabilities and commercial uses of facial recognition technology,” explains the NTIA notice.

This first meeting, and all subsequent meetings, will be open to the public and the media.

“This first meeting is intended to provide stakeholders with factual background regarding how facial recognition technology is currently used by businesses, how the technology might be employed in the near future, and what privacy issues might be raised by the technology,” the notice continues.

The NTIA hopes to develop a draft code of conduct during these initial eight sessions and “freeze” the draft after the June 24th meeting. The draft would then be circulated for further public comment and revisions.

Further information about this process is available from John Verdi, of the NTIA, at 202-482-8238 or jverdi@ntia.doc.gov.


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